After months at home it is finally time to go back to school! If this is your first term at Oxford, you’ll know that getting ready for university can be an exciting and exhausting experience. Even returning students struggle to fit all their belonging into one car, but it is worth it!

Here are ten songs to get you through the strange term ahead. Whether you’re dancing down the cobblestone streets or moving away from home for the first time – there’s a song here for you

  1. ‘Have a Nice Day’ by Stereophonics

This is a great song to listen to first thing in the morning to lift your mood! During quarantine everyone has been working to stay positive in day to day life, coming back to school is an opportunity to join new societies and finally go on that run you’ve been planning. So Have a Nice Day and enjoy the new routine.

2. ‘Bye Bye Bye’ by Plants and Animals

Moving away from home for the first time (or the second, or third…) can be difficult. But saying goodbye doesn’t have to be a bad thing! This song captures the moment when you’re saying goodbye to what you know but doesn’t forget to look forward to the future. There’s a whole new world of possibilities in Oxford, what adventures will you go on this term?

3. ‘Dancing in the Moonlight’ by Toploader

An incredibly cheerful song and a classic. It’s important to celebrate going back to school and what better way to achieve that than through music? Put this on in the background when you’re unpacking and you’ll find yourself dancing in no time!

4. ‘After the storm’ by Mumford & Sons

If you’re worried about what the future may bring in these uncertain times and want some hope, you’ll like this song by Mumford & Sons. We can’t ignore the fact that things will be more difficult for students and tutors alike this year but we should keep hoping that things will improve. On step at a time, and the first one is returning to work.

5. ‘Come together’ by The Beatles

Although the Covid restrictions may cause complications, coming back to university is about coming together. Whether you’re making new friends through virtual events or getting to know the people in your household bubble, you won’t be alone. The Beatles give good advice in this famous 60’s track.

6. ‘Dog days are over’ by Florence + The Machine

Another song that is guaranteed to make you smile! The tune starts out quite mellow but as soon as the chorus hits you’ll be up and dancing. Whilst we may still have some ‘dog days’ ahead, we also have some great adventures to look forward to and the start of school represents a fresh start that deserves to be celebrated.

7. ‘Not Ok!’ by Chaz Cardigan

Believe it or not, it’s okay not to be okay. Feel like you’re having a rough day? Put some music on and take some time for yourself. Going back to school can be as stressful as it is exciting so don’t be worried if you’re Not Ok!

8. ‘Where we come alive’ by Ruelle

You’re finally allowed to leave the house and go back to school! This powerful song invites you to take advantage of this independence and enjoy it to the full. University gives you the opportunity to try new things and to figure out what makes you come alive. It can feel like a brave new world full of new possibilities and responsibilities. Go and live your life.

9. ‘On Top of the World’ by Imagine Dragons

It does exactly what it says on the tin- this tune makes you feel like you are On Top of the World. An incredibly cheerful song which will make you feel ready to face anything. Before the hustle and bustle of term starts take a moment to stop and enjoy going to such an amazing university!

10. ‘Welcome Home, Son’ by Radical Face

It’s amazing how quickly Oxford can come to feel like home. Returning students may have missed out on living in the city during Trinity term but many of us will be able to return now. You can listen to this song whilst walking past the Bodleian or through the gates of your college, take a deep breath and settle back into university life.

Emily Broughton

Emily Broughton (she/her) is a Blueprint Editor for the Culture section. She is in her second year at Oxford and studies English Literature and Language at Mansfield College. In her spare time, she writes short stories only to force her friends and family to read them. She also loves horses, travel and talking about horses and travel.