I'm reporting to you with another tip to help make Wizard 101 easier for you and your wizard!
Training side schools is easy enough, right? Pick the one that looks thee coolest or most useful. In my opinion, you should pick a school that is in the same group of schools that yours is in. For instance, if your school is a spirit school (Life, Death, Myth), you should pick another spirit school. If your school is an elemental school, you should pick an elemental school (Storm, Fire Ice). This way, you can train the balance blades from the tree near the Krokosphinx and be able to use two of them. you also get shields from all the schools in your group, and for the school that you didn't train, you can put two of those shields at a time.
Life is also a good side school for any school of any group (exept the Life school, of course!).
I apologize for the length,