How to Study Well
What’s the hardest subject in school? The average student will probably answer the common ones, ‘Math’ ‘English’ or ‘Science’. But why make something so difficult when it doesn’t have to be? Today I’m going to tell you about my top 4 studying habits and how YOU can apply them to your daily life too.
Whether you’re studying for an upcoming test or preparing for a big assessment, one of my personal favorite things to do is to reassure myself that 'I can do it'. While I'm studying, there are always one or two subjects that I just can't seem to understand. This is really frustrating and I'm sure you would feel the same way. Whenever that happens, I make sure to give myself a little pat on the back as well as plenty of encouragement. Doing this lessens the stress or tension buildup I originally felt in my brain, and, consequently, reveals extra space for me to learn new information.
My studying routine almost always consists of me taking ‘short’ breaks. They normally span around 5-15 minutes long, and they’re taken in 1 hour intervals. Studies have shown that six year olds have an average of 15 minutes of attention span. Assuming everyone reading this is at least in high school or elementary school, your attention span should fall somewhere between 30 minutes to 1 hour. That being said, it’s actually really beneficial for your mind and body to take a little break every once in a while. Think about it. If your normal attention span lasts 45 minutes, and you take a break of ten minutes, then you would extend your attention another 45 minutes. I recommend everyone to try out this schedule of breaks as it can improve your studying habits exponentially.
Now, I’m going to sound like a parent, but you really should practice as much as possible. You know what they say, practice makes perfect. To prove my point, I’m going to expose myself a bit here. Last school year, I conducted an unexpected, unpremeditated experiment, where I took two tests. One in which I studied very hard, and another in which I hardly studied. As you may have already guessed, the test where I studied a lot came back as a 100%. However, in the other test, the one where I didn’t study, I received it back as 73%. You can clearly see the drastic difference in marks between the two. Needless to say, I wasn’t really happy with the lower mark. If you’re looking to bring your own marks up, I strongly suggest re-reading your notes, trying out some practice problems, and highlighting key areas.
Next, I’m going to share with you one of my biggest secrets to studying for upcoming exams. Not to be stereotypical, but as an Asian, it’s kind of a given that your parents are major math deities. As a result, I’ve learned (through years of blood, sweat and tears), to be pretty good at math myself. This is a direct result of my parents' strictness and constant persuasion. Unfortunately, this is exactly what I suggest that everyone does. Yep, you heard me right. I think it's worth the effort to give yourself some pressure while studying, but also making sure to take care of your mental wellness in the process. For example, if you have a science test set for next Monday and it is only the Wednesday before at the time, I highly recommend reading your class notes on Thursday and Friday, but then writing practice exams (that you find online) on Saturday and Sunday. Note that, when I say ‘pressure yourself’, I don’t mean being obsessed with getting perfect on every test, because that would, quite plainly, be unrealistic. However, you want to push yourself just enough to gain more knowledge, without feeling stressed out.
With these 4 tips in mind, I think you’re ready to conquer the world with your excellence in studying! Make sure to take it slow but also to study hard for the best results. Happy studying!