Get Good Grades
Getting good grades is no longer only for the nerds or geeks. If you don't take school seriously, it may affect your whole future. Success in school matters a lot for those who want to start early on going to the best schools, getting the best jobs, and making the most of themselves and is what determines your future. To start piling on the A's now, read on!
- Get a planner or calendar. Whether it's a day planner you carry in your backpack, a calendar on your wall at home, a to-do list you make at the end of every day, or an online calendar, it can help you keep track of when assignments are due and stay organized. At the beginning of the term, when you get your planner, note down every test, quiz, and assignment due date. Do this for each class.
- Every day when you get home from school, check your calendar and see what needs to be done before tomorrow, as well as what's on the horizon for the next few days. Check off what you have already done.
- Organize your locker/backpack/desk. Organizing whatever you use every day helps your mind feel clutter-free. It may sound silly, but when your visual environment is simple and orderly, your mind can concentrate on the more important stuff. Once a week, clean out your locker or backpack and organize your desk. It only takes a couple minutes.
- You won't lose things when you automatically put them where they belong. Having a backpack, desk, or locker that's full of loose papers just gets confusing and frustrating.
- Make a study schedule. You have a calendar for the week or month, but you need a weekly study schedule, too. Map out your week to see when your studying can and should get done. That way you know just how much time you can devote to each class and when it makes the most sense to study for each one.Make sure that you abide by the plans that you make.
- Use your common sense when it comes to allotting time to specific classes. For example, Badminton needs a lot less time than Principals of Celestial Mechanics.
- Make sure you have an agenda so that you can write down all of your tests, when you have to study, and when you have homework due.Be sure that you complete all your homework. It boosts your learning.
- Find Your Learning Style. The matter of fact is that certain techniques don't work for certain people. Some of us learn with our hands, some of us with our eyes, and some of us with our ears (and others a combination). If you can't remember a thing your professor said, maybe you're just going about it the wrong way.
- Once you find out your learning style, you can zone in on what's best for you. Do you remember best the things you've seen? Then study those notes and make graphs! The things you've heard? Go to class and record those lectures. Things you do with your hands? Turn the concepts into something you can build.
- Read the textbook. As much as it is boring and monotonous, it's incredibly useful -- sometimes professors don't even mention the info in class! After reading a paragraph, revise it in your head without looking. Then read it again. It will stay in your mind for a longer time. It is particularly effective when you have less time for studying.
- Often the things mentioned in class that are also mentioned in the book are the most important . If you run across some of this while reading, highlight it. You'll want to know where it is to find it later.
- Don't write off the benefits of scanning. Concentrating on the main ideas (the highlighted text, italics, etc.) will get your mind going. If you can fill in the blanks, great! If you can't, read deeper.
- Take good notes. For most courses in middle school, high school, and junior/community college, most of what is on the tests and homework will be discussed in the class. If your teacher draws a diagram on the board, copy that down - it can help you remember the information.
- Write good, legible notes. Use highlighters if there's something you need to find easily flipping through your notes, but don't highlight too much text or it defeats the purpose. Colored pens are fun to write with if you want to get more creative with your notes, but use them only for sections of your notes that you feel will be on a test or are important.
- Study effectively. Wasting nights pouring over books and emerging feeling like you've gotten nothing out of it is just about the worst. Instead of falling asleep over your textbook, try the following:
- Make a study guide and review it. Look in the textbook and put all important ideas and details in your notes. Go over it until you feel like you know the material well. If you've written it, you'll probably remember more of it.
- Make someone test you on the study guide. Talking about the information out loud is a lot easier to retain than going over the same stuff in your brain over and over. When you have to explain it to someone else, it forces you to understand it, not just know it.
- Invent fun ways to study. Make flash cards, have a friend over, or join an after-school homework club if you can for help from a teacher or friend from the same class. You can make a board game to make studying fun and easy, or you can just type up your notes if it makes it easier to read. Do as much as possible to make sure you know the material.
- Participate in class. You've done your homework, so you're totally prepared to participate in class. Show that you know your stuff! There are a few reasons this is a good idea. The most important one is that participating in class will cement in your head the stuff you learned from doing your homework (before it was more like Jell-O).
- The second good reason is that it will cement the information in your brain. Seriously. Talking about it out loud (especially in class, where it's a bit more stressful than when with a friend) uses a different part of your brain than just writing about it. This way, you're covering all your bases.
- The third good reason is that your professor will totally appreciate it. No teacher likes a room full of crickets. Get on their good side, and you'll get treated better when grade time comes around or when you ask for extra credit.
- Ask for help. If you're not sure what's required for a good grade or are struggling with the coursework, ask your teacher for help. It doesn't have to be a complex question; your teacher is always happy to help you. Ask after class, during office hours, or in an e-mail for assistance.
- Often things we're told one-on-one stick with us more than things we're just being lectured about. In addition to the personalized learning session, your teacher will appreciate your efforts and straight up probably like you more. Having a teacher that likes you can come in very, very, very handy.
- Get a tutor. If in the end the subject is super hard and you just can't understand it, get a tutor to help you. sometimes a tutor is even more helpful than getting a one-on-one with a teacher because they are closer to your age and can explain things to you in a manner that you can understand better.
Doing Your Homework
- Do your homework immediately after school. Time management is essential. If you're given an assignment that's due next week, don't procrastinate; get started within a few days of receiving the assignment. The more time you have, the less you'll stress.
- If possible, try to get assignments finished at least two or three days before the due date. This is to avoid last minute emergencies, like "the dog eating your paper," a party invitation, the printer running out of ink, illness, family emergency, etc. Most teachers will deduct points for each day your work is late. Some do not accept late papers at all. If it helps you, try handing in your homework a couple days before it's due.
- Homework counts for a large portion of your grade. If your teacher has any extra credit assignments, do them! It won't hurt if you try it out. Even if you get some wrong, your teachers will still notice your effort to try to learn more.
- Why you should do your homework. Make sure that if you do your homework when your teacher or friend checks it that after school you go through it. If you do not understand it it will be better if you write down any questions that you need to know and ask your teacher after politely. Join extra classes too it will help you get better grades fast. Get tutor lesson if you can not afford your teacher will help you for free if she or he wants to.
- Put homework first. Set yourself goals and make sure you reach them before you go out and party. Having a social life is important, but your grades can affect a lot of your choices for the future. Schedule time each day to study, just as you would schedule dates or parties.
- You can reward yourself for getting your homework done! Once you've completed it, it's TV, food, or party time. If that's not enough, ask if mom or dad can help you get incentivized. They want you to get good grades, too!
- Work with friends. Studying for tests with friends is super beneficial, so why not do homework with friends, too?! Not only will you stay motivated (and possibly stay interested in the class), but you'll be able to combine your levels of awesome and get things done more quickly, effectively, and possibly creatively.
- The key here is to choose a friend that will pull his/her weight. You don't want to work with a friend that expects you to do all the work. Nor do you want a friend that wants neither of you to work! Choose a friend that's as goal-oriented as you are.
- Don't plagiarize. The quickest way to get a zero on an assignment is to plagiarize it. Technology is amazing nowadays and your teacher will know if you're plagiarizing. Whether it's Google Translate or a speech by Martin Luther King, Jr., they'll know. So don't risk it.
Preparing for Tests
- Study with a friend. There is strength in numbers, even when it comes to studying. Bouncing ideas off each other and combining knowledge is a resource that is invaluable. Just make sure you don't distract each other or spend you whole time chatting with each other about the day!
- This takes the information off the page and makes it fun and memorable. When you have to explain something to a friend, your brain has to wrap around it, instead of just taking it in and hoping that it stays. Make flashcards and study guides for each other to cover all the material.
- Use memory tricks. Things like mnemonic devices can really trigger information that doesn't otherwise want to stick. Odds are you probably know Roy G. Biv for the order of the colors of the rainbow or "My very exhausted mother just slept until noon." for the order of the planets. Why is that? They're effective mnemonic devices that stick in your mind! Associations work, too. If you're trying to remember that India used to be a British colony, picture the queen jogging laps around the Taj Mahal. When the test comes, you may not remember what you actually should remember, but you'll remember enough to jog your memory!
- Study in the places that you feel comfortable in. You need a good, calm place to study. Make sure you have a sweater in case it gets cold, a good, comfy chair, some dark chocolate (brain power!
), a bottle of water, and whatever else you may need. That way, you'll have few interruptions.
- Research also shows that you should study in more than one place. It sounds a little funny, but your brain makes associations with your environment. So the more associations it has, the more likely you are to retain the information. Locate all the comfy chairs and study in them all!
- Stop cramming. Although it's inevitable sometimes, cramming isn't the way to go. In fact, taking breaks is good for your brain and will help you retain more. Try to study in 20-50 minute intervals, taking five or ten minutes in between.
- And if you're on top of things, it's best to study over a full week. Several sessions will cement the knowledge in your head and by the end you'll be able to notice how much better you know the content, allowing you to relax and be confident.
- Relax. Easier said than done? Remember - you have all of the answers in your head already! The only challenge is getting them out! Your first instinct is nearly always correct. Don't go back and change answers. If you are really not sure, skip it and come back later.
- Always read the questions given on a test. Skimming over them might tell you the opposite of what you need to do.
- If you're uncertain about the wording of a test question, go and ask the teacher what it means. As long as you don't flat out ask for the answer to a question, just what they meant by the question; they will usually answer.
- Get a good night's rest. You need sleep in order to stay focused, and without it, you will have a hard time staying on task and may forget what you just learned. That's part of the reason why cramming is so evil!
- Sleep is wonderful. Sleep deprivation can lead to accidents, dumbs you down, and can actually cause health problems. If you have to choose between one last cramming session and sleep, choose sleep.
Making Grade-A Decisions
- Choose the right classes. In college, though sometimes in high school too, it's tempting to choose classes that look super impressive or are just plain out of your reach. While taking difficult classes is great and you'll learn a lot, limit it to one or two. If all you have is rocket science, you're bound to get overwhelmed. Take Rocket Science 101 and Sand Volleyball. Your brain deserves the break!
- Choose the right amount of classes, too. Being absolutely time-swamped won't do you any favors. When will you study? Stick to the normal amount (4 or 5 classes per semester for college) and do well in those. It's better to do well in a few than to do mediocre in many.
- Get to class on time. The simplest way to get good grades is just to show up to class in the first place. Not only will you get the credit for attendance (hopefully), but you won't miss any imperative announcements, concepts the professor stresses, or bonus questions the teacher includes in class (sneaky buggers, aren't they?).
- If you're ever on the borderline between grades, going to class will help you. Professors often look at attendance to see if the student's grade should be rounded up or down in questionable circumstances. Give yourself the benefit of the doubt and go!
- Eat a good, healthy breakfast every day. It is known that if students eat a good and healthy breakfast every morning, they generally get good grades and are able to focus better in school.
Even if you're not hungry early in the morning, bring something with you for later.
- You want to be not hungry -- not stuffed to the brim and sick. Instead of a six-egg omelette, go for a bowl of cereal and an orange. You'll feel more able to focus on your studies instead of that rock in your stomach.
- Improve your memory with games. Give your brain a workout - try some fun puzzle exercises every day such as crosswords, Sudoku, and other games which are easy enough for anyone to do. This will boost your brainpower and you will be able to memorize more information at school.
- Websites like Lumosity and Memrise are great resources! Memrise even lets you input your own information to learn!
- Use your time wisely. If you are given an hour to complete a 120 question test, that's 30 seconds per question. 30 seconds can be made into a lot of time. Many of the questions will take far less than 30 seconds, so apply the balance to a tougher question. Don't think too deeply on the time, and don't let yourself get distracted by the ticking of the clock.
- Time limits are sometimes arbitrary. If you really need an extra 5 minutes, ask. A diligent student that needs a bit more time is a concession most teachers will be willing to make.
- Don't be afraid to be great. Don't worry if people think you are a perfectionist or an overachiever. Be persistent with your work while everyone else is fooling around in class. In a few years you will more than likely never see these people again, but you will see the A's and B's on your transcript that could have been C's and D's if you hadn't practiced!
- Get an expandable file and put in the labels. Put your papers in the file so that you always have the correct things at the correct times. If you have a desk put the file in your desk. If you have a locker you can put the file in your book bag for the day but at lunch you can put it your locker or on your free period.
- Be positive and don't give up. Always try your best and make sure that you do it to the best standard possible.
- Make a document that you can use to track your grades each term to see if you have improved.
- Ask your teacher if you can do an essay or extra sheet of problems for extra credit. If he/she says yes, hand it in the next day. If he/she hands it back before the test, you'll see your mistakes and be able to fix them. Do the same for your answers. You may even consult those who are smarter than you. Don't feel that you become small or degrade in their eyes when you ask them; they'll feel happy to share their knowledge with you. You can never learn well with your timidness.
- Look up extra information about anything you're studying. It will help increase your understanding of the information, make it more interesting, and make it easier to remember. Your teachers will be impressed if you can add information that you didn't learn in class into the essay or test.
- You may have to cut down on entertainment in order to succeed. The best students know that they cannot hang out because they have to study." It is possible that some friends might tease you, but your real friends will understand.Don't get worried or feel small for what they say. Remember though that you do need to relax every now and then or you will get too stressed out and get worse grades. It is important to balance out your studies and social life.
- Sometimes it helps if you reward yourself. If you've gotten good grades, take a day off of studying.But make sure that you don't start overlooking your studies.
- Read every night and then ask yourself questions on what you just read to recap. This will also show you how much you need to work on reading comprehension.You may recap what you learnt during walks and while you're engaged in other works.
- Organize your work area. Make sure everything is neat and you can find it easily. As any college student will tell you, working in an untidy environment will only lead to distraction. Make sure you have all of the supplies you need for class.
- Have small goals helps. Your goals should try to improve slowly and finally settle on that A. Aiming for an A right away leaves you feeling unrewarded and makes your goal seem unreachable.
- Pay attention in your class and try to understand what you teacher is saying/explaining.
- Don't worry about competing with people around you, as they may have other goals. Just work hard and try to achieve your goals because you are doing it for you, and you only.
- Always try to do impress your teachers by adding notes or paraphrasing to make things more clear. Then they will notice how good of a student you are.
- Sit in good environment. Keep any of your gadgets away while you study. Have a last minute revision before you enter the test room. Stay calm.
- If your teacher asks you a question that you don't know, try to work through the question! you never know if your answer might be right!
- Instead of studying late into the night, go to sleep an hour earlier than usual. Studies show that sleep helps your brain remember from the previous day and clears your mind of stress and anxiety. Plus, you won't get crazy.
- Be sure to wake up on time. Over sleeping sometimes makes you even more tired. It's no use being in class drooling all over that test you've been studying for all year!
- If you get frustrated, while studying or doing your homework, give yourself a short break to cool off.
- Use YouTube, and listen to other people explain the lesson if you didn't understand it in class.
- Know about your goals and plan for it regularly. Don't let anything makes you less serious than you should be.
- When a new session starts or a term starts, try to study on a daily basis e.g. study at night the things you wrote in your notebooks earlier that day and go through it again during the weekend. This will help you during exams as there will be less stress.
- Write down anything you got wrong on a quiz, test or assignment, and study those type of things. Remember to study about you already know so that you don't forget.
- Complete any assignments as soon as possible. It helps you get it out of the way so you can have more free time.
- Listen to your teacher and the way that they explain things.The way you know how to do something may not be how your teacher wants you to do it. Depending on the instructor, it may be more important to follow the steps rather than to just get the correct result. They might explain or give you examples of how you should do it. If you listen to her you will know how to do the work or complete the assignment .
- Don't leave the class without really understanding what you learned in there. Ask questions if everyone else doesn't. Be the bigger man and get that knowledge for the future.
- Always review your lesson notes at the end of school, and revise them if necessary.
- Ask for help from the teacher, a friend, or a parent, they know what's best for you and can offer good advice.
- Ask one of your family members if they can take an electronic you don't need away for time being. It will help you focus then you'll get in the habit of not being on electronics.
- Make sure you know what type of learner you are, such as visual and auditory learners. This way you can study more effectively and remember more information.
- If you do get punished for bad grades, then be sure you strive to try better than you did in the yesteryear. Remember that there's always time for improvement!
- Forming bad study habits or disregard for learning and studying will hold you back in the future. Although it seems far off, it's not.
- Don't hang around with friends who are not serious in their education. Always stay close to the smart guys, even if your friends laugh at you. It is your grades and future;don't undermine it; what you put in it is what you get out of it. Remember the popular proverb- "As you sow,so you reap."
- Maintain a 4.0 GPA
- Avoid Being Punished with Bad Grades
- Take Better Notes
- Get Good Grades As a Teen Without Burying Yourself Under Books
- Get Better Grades This Year Than You Did Last Year
- Avoid Being Overwhelmed by Information
- Improve Your Grade in Middle School
- Get Good Grades at a New School
- Get a Better Grade and Be Organized in School
Sources and Citations