Yes, it’s that time of year. Back to school! While Chicago schools don’t go back until after Labor Day, many of the surrounding suburbs start this week and next. The days will be getting shorter too. Daylight time is now getting one minute shorter every day. 8 pm sunsets are over until next May. Let’s start the school year off right with some good study habits!
- Have a planner– This is of course a good place to track assignments, but also keep all your other dates like extracurricular activities, tests, practices, and holidays. It can be electronic, paper, or both.
- Have a quiet place at home to do your studying. Make sure it is well stocked with all the supplies you need. Have a good strong light and a comfortable chair. This will be your main spot but don’t forget about libraries, coffee shops, or even another part of the house. This can sometimes jumpstart your brain!
- Keep a simple system for organization. Whether you use separate notebooks for each subject or one large binder with tabs, it doesn’t matter. Make it both organized and easy to use, so you will use it.
- Start big projects small. For large time-consuming projects, set a schedule to do a small section every few days. This really eliminates the mad scramble to finish.
- Set aside time every day. Even for small assignments, get into a routine of working every day.
- Time block– Realize how long tasks take. It may take you longer to read that assignment and answer the questions than you think.
- Keep distractions to a minimum. Have a “Do Not Disturb” sign for your study area. TURN OFF PHONE NOTIFICATIONS! You’ll get done much sooner.
- Check your notes every day. Make sure you understand the work. Fill in details and highlight important items.
- Take advantage of extra class time. Use this time to start homework or ask the teacher to clarify concepts you might not understand.
- Even if you don’t have any assignments, study a little every day. It’s easy to cram the night before for a quiz but when midterm exams come around, you’ll be happy you really know the material from reviewing it nightly.
Get into a good routine and keep yourself organized. This will ensure a successful and worry- free year. Have some fun too! Try to make a friend in every class. It’s always good to have a study partner.
KATHLEEN WEAVER-ZECH & DEAN’S TEAM CHICAGO