So just recently I failed my history test, which leaves me off at a rather terrible start for the school year, and I thought I should write a memo to myself and possibly even to others on how to fail. Not how to pass. Everyone has their own kind of study method, and some just don’t study at all. Based on this, I can’t really give advice on how to get an A. Well, here it is:
For me, I tend to put off on studying in order to finish the soon-to-be-due homework assignments, projects, and reports. Or sometimes I’ll just laze around because I’m not in the mood to do anything, despite knowing I have a lot of work to do.
2. Cramming the night before.
I know all students, at least ONCE in their life, have put off studying so much that they’re staying up until 3 or 4 AM trying to cram all the information in.
Well here’s something nice, yet slightly worrying, to remember: If you haven’t been learning the content until then, you’re probably not going to learn it in a few hours. A teacher of mine said this to me last year a couple weeks before finals. Sure, I was probably not going to be able to remember everything in order to get an A. She made me realize that. But she also focused on helping us RECALL the materials. Don’t memorize, don’t cram, don’t forget the content as soon as you take the test. Someday, you WILL need to know some of this information. All throughout the school year, try to read the content over and over again. At the first week of school, start by reading one chapter a day. Then as time goes by, add more and more chapters to each study session. This takes time, but after a while it won’t even take that long to review all the content. Flashcards, videos, silly voices, reenacting everything, trying to teach someone, talking to your friends and family about it. This ALL helps with understanding, knowing, and being capable of recalling the information at any point in time. A friend of mine sometimes tells me to outline the chapters for about 15 minutes a day. He said that by the time the test came, I’d probably already be done. I have yet to try this, but it seems rather helpful and I will definitely have to thank him for this piece of advice. Oh, it also helps to PERSONALIZE your notes. I did this in my math class last year. I’d write little notes on the sides or on a new piece of paper, create equations and explanations, and then make a copy of it and solve in order to see if I learned anything. I actually found this fun to do, and it improved my grade from a B to an A by the end of the second semester.
3. Before the test and during the test.
By the time I’m about to take the test, I’m pretty much just making this face. I’m panicking and getting all flustered, then thinking about how I was about to fail the test and not know any of the content. I’m also thinking about all the things I wasn’t able to study and also the content I pretty much just skimmed. I’m always full of regret and thinking, “I’ll study better next time.” Yeah. That never happens. Anyways, because of all this panicking I’m always unable to concentrate during the test and thus end up making a lot of simple mistakes. I also tend to draw a blank on the content I actually do know.
If you guys are doing any of this, STOP RIGHT NOW. BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE. You don’t want to get a D or an F. When that happens, you’re unhappy, your teacher’s unhappy, and your parents are absolutely furious. However, if you did study hard and still received a bad grade, ask your teacher or friends for help. They’re sure to benefit you somehow.
…Wish me luck guys. I have yet to face the wrath of my parents.
*End Note* – Yes, I realize I did end up giving some advice during this blog post. I don’t know, they’re just suggestions. People really do have their own methods of studying, so I wouldn’t say this is the only way to pass.