By Evie Jepp
We all start the new school year with the best intentions; to have an immaculate pencil case, efficient study techniques, good grades as well as the perfect social life! At some point, however, many of us stumble and lose our grip on our school work. The following are some handy study tips that if utilized, can help anyone to get the most out of the school year!
Organization is key. It cannot be stressed enough that organization is the most important strategy for minimising stress and optimising potential.
Here are some simple yet effective ways to stay organized:
- To-do lists: to-dos create a simple breakdown of the tasks ahead and reduce your chances of forgetting important due dates
- Neatness: as a general rule, I always leave my study area how I would like it to be when I return, neat and clutter free.
- Goal making: voice your goals, as that increases the chance of the goal becoming a reality. Tell your parents and teachers because once the goals are identified, they can assist you in being accountable and keeping on track
- Time management: time management can be difficult to commit to at first, however, once it is mastered it will improve your efficiency greatly. Dedicate a chunk of time to a specific task and once this time is up, move on.
2. Have a specific time dedicated to study.
Other than organisation, creating healthy and maintainable study habits are vital. A good habit is to include writing down the most important things you have learned in each class at the end of each day. This can include keywords or lines of important notes and you only need to spend about 5 minutes doing this. Also try to study every afternoon even when there isn’t a test, as this takes information from short-term to long-term memory. Then once the topic is completed in class type up all of your notes and store the document in a folder to use for later revision. By reviewing information more frequently, the brain gets used to this information coming up in daily life and when it comes to the test, your brain will easily be able to spit out the important information you need.
Timing is key; study for 20 minutes and break for 5 minutes and continue this rotation for the time period that you are studying for. It has been shown to increase your memory and intake of content!
3. Avoid procrastination.
The best antidote to procrastination is to do work as soon as it is assigned. A good tip is that when you get an assignment, figure out approximately how much time you’ll need to research, compile findings and add finishing touches. Making a plan decreases the chance of you forgetting an assignment as you can easily tick off tasks as you go and see what needs to be done!
Never leave all homework or study to do on the weekend. It took me years to realize that we have hours after school to slowly work through the homework you are assigned. Instead of leaving it for the weekend, when you’ll become stressed and not have enough time, take the opportunity to spend a couple of hours after school every day to work on your assignments and homework.
4. Reward yourself.
Go get that ice-cream with your friends, take your dog for a walk, watch your favourite TV show or hang out with your favourite people. Balance is key!
Remember that it is important to have a balance between study and social life!
5. Other important reminders.
Drink lots of water; it’s important to keep hydrated because this allows the brain to function at its optimal level.
Get lots of sleep; the brain processes most of its information while you’re sleeping. So get those hours up! The recommended rest time for teens is between 8-9 hours every night.
Exercise. Exercising before study has been proven to increase the brain’s functionality. Keeping the body healthy is also important in your social/study-life balance.
With these tips in mind, you can enter this school year with a clear slate and achieve the goals you strive for!
Cover image via Tumblr.