There are many students out there who suffer from a lack of good grades. They try their hardest but just can't seem to get a good grade. They may surf the Internet or ask people they know "What are the best study helps." Sometimes they might get an answer, and it may help them for a little while. But then they come across new harder school subjects and those study helps don't really work for them anymore.
Until fairly recently I was one of those students. I had a good average grade, and I didn't really have to study for the tests or quizzes. Then high school started and my regular way of getting average grades didn't work anymore. I started to fail more and more quizzes and tests. My case seemed hopeless until my Dad showed me a few study helps that worked for him when he was in school. After I started doing these helps my grades improved, which improved my report card, which in turn improved my teachers mood and my parents mood.
So if you were like me and are struggling to get better grades please continue reading. I have listed a few of my study helps down below and I hope that it helps you too. But the bottom line is these study helps will require determination and perseverance as it will include quite a bit of extra work to your school day. Though one thing that you should never do is resort to CHEATING! it may help you for a bit until you either get caught or you run into a situation where you will not be able to cheat. Please never stoop so low as to cheat and although we have all done it at some time or another cheating is not the answer. It will not help you in the world and in your day to day life so please, do not even for a second consider cheating as an option.
Step 1: Outline Your Facts
I once heard a quote that "An outline is not a shackle, it is a tool." Outlining your facts is a great way to help remember things. Writing it down is alone a study help, but an outline presents the facts in a clear easy way to remember. Write down your facts in the order of importance, for example if you had the facts Brain, Cerebrum, Cerebellum, and Brain Stem you should write them down like this and with a short note of what that organ is and what it does. But what if you come across a fact that doesn't really have a place in the outline? In that case just make a separate line and write down what you need to remember.
The Brain and Its Three Main Parts
1. Brain One of the major organs of the Central Nervous System.
A. Cerebrum The upper part of the brain, coordinates thought, memory, and learned behaviors.
B. Cerebellum Lower part of the brain, helps control balance and coordinate voluntary muscle activity.
C. Brain Stem The part of the brain that connects to the spinal cord, controls the involuntary muscles and activities of the Autonomic Nervous System.
Remember Fact. The brain is called the seat of the mind.
This is the help that I use the most and it really helps my remembering skills. So just a quick outline and a short note underneath explaining what you need to know about the fact you have written down. It may also help to bold the facts as your eyes will be drawn to the bold text before the normal text. Also include in your outline title what chapter and page number these facts are found on. Because if your teacher tells you what page numbers to study for a test you will want to be able to find them quickly and easily instead of searching through the outline for the facts you need to know. Remember it is all about outlining the facts in a way for you to understand. The way I outline may not work for you so be sure to be creative and come up with an outline plan that helps you the best.
Step 2: Make Flashcards
Flashcards are a great way to help you remember things. Just make it a game. To make a flashcard, I would buy a stack of 4 x 5 cards and write your fact onto the front and write what you need to know about the fact on the back. For example.
Front: The Brain
Back: The brain is one of the main organs of the Central Nervous System
Once you have made a few flashcards bring them to someone you know and have them hold the front side facing you and try to remember what you wrote on the back and repeat it back to the friend holding the card. A few people who might help you with this is your parents, friends, family, or maybe even your teachers. You can even download flashcard apps that let you type in what you want and then it will show you a card and you can try to type down what the fact is about. Either way make this a game and try to see how many cards you can get through before making a mistake.
Step 3: Study When You Are Fully Awake
It is not going to help you if you are falling asleep while you are studying. So the best times to study is right after you are fully functional after waking up, after drinking something with caffeine in it, and after a walk or other physical activity. If you are falling asleep while studying maybe you should consider heading to bed early and studying during lunch break or recess. While you will still remember a few facts from your studying you will remember much more if you are fully awake. So if you find yourself drooling on your schoolbooks maybe head to bed, or take a short power nap on the couch, or do some other relaxing activity to help your body recover from the hustle and bustle of school and daily activities.
Step 4: Study Without Distractions
Distraction is a major study deficit for most students. I mean who can help it when the phone is ringing, your siblings are screaming, your dog just had an accident, and your cat is using your couch as a clawing post. Most people can't manage to study without distractions. So a good idea is to find a quiet spot in your house, or maybe go to the park, or the library (Unless you read books then don't go to the library as that will be an even bigger deficit). Have your own personal quiet space or quiet time where you can study without distractions. If you have a phone give it to a trustworthy person so that you will not have the distraction of wanting to check Facebook every few minutes. And do not eat food while you are studying. As you are wasting brain functions figuring out what the food tastes like or what it smells like. So stay away from noise distractions, smell distractions, taste distractions, and any other things that could distract you during your study time.
Step 5: Set Deadlines
Procrastination is also one of the major deficits of studying. Most of the population of students out there are procrastinators. Procrastination is delaying a project until the last minute, or never doing the project at all. One way to work around procrastination is to set deadlines because a part of your brain will wake up and decide to take control and get the project done when a deadline gets to near. So when a project comes along that you know you will procrastinate on, just imagine that the deadline for the project is in the very near future and that if you do not finish it as fast as possible you will face public humiliation. The last step is to get started on that project!
Step 6: Repetition
In the picture, the word Repetition is repeated over and over. Why? Because Repetition is the key. All of the helps I have already mentioned are really good helps. But in the end that it just what they are, helps. Just the helps by themselves are not going to get you better grades. It is going to take Repetition. Even if you do an outline for one chapter, you are still going to have to make another one for the next chapter, you are going to have to make more flashcards, and you are still going to have to set more deadlines. All of this is called Repetition. But what does Repetition do? It drills the facts and answers into your brain where you will be able to remember it better. The flashcards are built on the foundation of Repetition. The outlines are built on the foundation of Repetition. Setting deadlines is built on the foundation of Repetition. In the long run the only reliable way to get better grades is Repetition.