The Student Newspaper of Poly Prep Country Day School

The Polygon

The Student Newspaper of Poly Prep Country Day School

The Polygon

The Student Newspaper of Poly Prep Country Day School

The Polygon

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The Devil’s Advocate January/February 2024

Dear Devil’s Advocate,

While it may be a new semester, I still have lots of work I need to get done during the day. However, no matter what I do, I can just never seem to be productive at school, so I’m looking for a place to go on campus that will help me get stuff done. What are the best spots at Poly for studying (even though we know I’ll probably still end up getting distracted)?


Poly Procrastinator


Dear Poly Procrastinator,


Even in a school as big as Poly, it can be hard to find a place to get stuff done. The library, as we’re sure you haven’t noticed, has become the prime social spot on campus, and with the construction of the arts building, many of the best work locations around campus were closed. But, now that it’s completed and students once again have free rein over the entire Dyker campus, we’ve put together a list for you of Poly’s best spots to lock in, ordered from busiest to quietest.


Student Center

Coming in first as our loudest location is the Student Center. Formerly the realm of juniors and seniors, this sunny spot has now been overtaken by underclassmen and is also home to the Blue Devil Deli. The Stu, as it’s often called, is a great place to grab a muffin and hang out (if you can get a seat), but the crush of people and clamor of conversation that usually fill it make it pretty difficult to get anything productive done there. 


Trophy Room

Far from just being the entrance to Commons and the Chapel, the Trophy Room has a rich history displayed on every wall and, depending on the time, can even be the ideal study spot. However, timing is key- if you’re there during the middle of a period, the space will be deserted, but during passing time or anywhere between 11:00 and 1:00, this is one of the busiest rooms on campus. 


Art Tables

Like the Student Center, the tables outside the art studios are now primarily the domain of underclassmen, and like the Trophy Room, their effectiveness as a study spot depends entirely on timing. At the beginning and end of the day, this area will be overwhelmed by people entering and exiting, hanging out with their friends, and scanning in (or forgetting to). However, if you catch it in the middle of the day, this is a great spot to finish that paragraph for History class, or even to eat lunch if you want an escape from Commons. The ceramics and artworks in the cases on the walls make this spot all the more interesting.



The Quad is the heart of Poly and in nice weather, or even on a cold sunny day, it’s the best place to be. However, because it’s so central, people are always passing through, so the Quad might be better suited to talking with your friends and enjoying the fresh air than to serious studying. However, if you snag a table during a quieter hour, the Quad can be the ideal place to finish your English reading with the sun shining on you. 



In the lobby and on the second-floor landing of the Novogratz are tables, chairs, and comfortable couches. Grab a drink from the lobby’s vending machines, get hydrated, and then get to work in this space— the Novogratz can be a great place to lock in academically as well as athletically. 


Arts Building

The completion of Poly’s newest building not only provided us with a new band room, dance studio, and gallery space but also with a student space in the form of its open lobby. With big windows and student artwork on the walls, this is a great place to go but be warned that its benches might not make the best furniture for studying. 


Admissions Lobby

A favorite for some, the Admissions Lobby boasts arguably the most comfortable chairs on campus. There are a limited number, so don’t expect a vibrant social scene, but if you’re looking for a quiet area to get comfortable, listen to music, and grind out a paper, we highly recommend this spot.



The tree-lined Malkin Terrace has lots of space for work or socializing and is the perfect springtime—or, if you can brave the cold, year-round—gathering spot. The benches are far apart enough that you can calmly crack open a book while your friends loudly play catch nearby and students rush past to their Science classes. Just watch out for the occasional falling seed pods.


Pool Deck

It’s risky to put this spot in a publication as circulated as The Polygon, as it’s fairly under the radar, but the pool deck deserves notice. In addition to the bench in the corner that’s a great place to settle down for a quick math worksheet, this space also boasts the best acoustics on campus. Finally, with the watery shadows cast on the walls and a chlorinated scent, this space will give you the illusion of being far away from Dyker Heights, so you won’t even feel like you’re working. 


Library Conference Room

This spot requires booking in advance, and there’s frequently a class in here, but if you can reserve it, there’s no better spot for a group study session than the Conference Room. While you can see your friends milling around the Library through the windows, you’ll be far away from distractions up here as you spread your notes out on the big table and get to work.


Empty Classroom

To make sure you definitely won’t be interrupted, walk through the halls while classes are in session and look for an empty classroom. As long as no one’s in there, you’re good to claim it for studying. An empty classroom is your best bet for when you require absolute silence, or when you need a room to yourself to record a biology Flipgrid or practice a language oral presentation.


Hill Benches

Last but not least, our most remote spot: the benches atop the playground hill. There are benches scattered throughout the front of campus- by the tennis courts, around the pond, under the big tree- and all of them make great study spots, but nothing beats the absolute peace of the benches at the top of the hill. If you’re disturbed at all, it’ll only be by a squirrel or a wandering middle schooler, so pick a bench and cram for that Calc quiz or finish up your paper while enjoying the tranquility of nature.


While this guide doesn’t cover every inch of the school, it comes pretty close, so we hope it encourages you to take advantage of all that our campus has to offer and helps you achieve your productivity goals. Next time you have a free period, consult our guide, claim one of these spots, put on your headphones, and be prepared for your studying to go from hell to heaven.



The Devil’s Advocate

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About the Contributors
Eleanor Brown
Eleanor Brown is the current Features Editor for the Polygon. She began writing articles since her sophomore year, and served as the Features Editor as a junior. Her passion for journalism often leans creative, as she particularly enjoys profile writing and, of course, co-writing the Devil’s Advocate, the school advice column. In addition to her time on the Polygon, Eleanor co-founded The Poly Record, Poly’s literary magazine and co-leads Women’s Affinity. Outside of school, she enjoys tutoring and playing piano, sitting on Ticketmaster presale lines, and making lists upon lists of restaurants in her Notes app.
William Ling-Regan
William Ling-Regan, Opinions Editor
Throughout his time at the Polygon, William has served as the Photography Editor, the Features Editor, and, this year, as the Opinions Editor. He has enjoyed writing articles about everything from changes to Poly’s motto to the quails raised at the Lower School, but his favorite is the advice column he co-writes, the Devil’s Advocate. In addition to being a Polygon editor, William co-leads History Club, Student Service Board, Asia Society, the Crew Team, and Blue Key, and is a Vice President of Model UN and a peer tutor. Outside of school, William enjoys reading, hiking, and spending time with his friends and family.

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