Ring! Ring! Can you hear the sound of the bell calling you to class? A new school year has started and with that comes new teachers, classes, and, of course, higher expectations.
Summer was a breeze; you took some time off and relaxed but didn’t lose your academic momentum. Now is the time to kick it into high gear and get a head start on the year to come! The question is what can you be doing now that will help you throughout the entire year? The answer — a lot! Read on for advice that will help make this year a success and help you plan for college!
Set realistic goals?
Create a grade goal worksheet and list your goals for each individual class, and three strategies you can use to reach them. Putting your pen to the paper helps you actualize your goals and encourages you to follow through with them.
Remember to keep it real. If math is a challenging subject and your grade last year was a C+, set a goal of a B+. A realistic expectation, for a demanding class would be to raise your grade by one full letter. If you are already an “A” student, figure out what you need to do to stay on top. Each year brings more challenging content, and new expectations; so give yourself a competitive advantage to help you stay on your "A" game.
This is great advice for college as well. Your planner is your new best friend. Staying organized will help you maintain your productivity. If you keep yourself organized, you can manage your time better and prioritize your academics, extra curricular activities and social life.
A golden rule would be to dedicate at least two hours an evening to homework. Let’s say you have a killer chemistry test coming up this week, which takes two hours to review for. If you stay organized each day you can review 30 minutes for the remainder of the week, instead of cramming it all in on Thursday night. Not only will you have more time for other subjects, but you will also absorb the content more effectively in smaller doses, as opposed to overwhelming yourself at the last minute.
Talk isn’t cheap?
Teachers may seem intimidating at times, but your first impression is crucial. Don’t sit at the back of the room talking to your friends, disrupting the class and losing focus. Front and center seats allow for fewer distractions and will help you stay focused on the content at hand. If you’re not the kind of student who enjoys participating, challenge yourself to say at least one comment per class. Also, make it a point to talk to your teachers outside of class. They are available during after-school hours so, utilize this amazing resource.
Review! Review! Review! ?
How important is it to review your work? You may be asking, “Why on Earth am I reviewing something I just learned last week?” If you nail down the concepts now, guess how much easier it will be for you to do well come midterms in several months? It will be a piece of cake if you review, and make sure you have everything down solid. Subjects are cumulative, meaning they build off a foundation. You need a sturdy foundation so that your house (or grades) don’t collapse over time.
Make this one of your best years yet by following this advice! Set your mind to achieving your academic goals and don’t let yourself settle for anything less then your best.
Danielle Rayo is the founder and director of Competitive Advantage Tutoring (http://catutoring.com).