Making a Game-Plan for Success in the New Semester

Mary Korzeniowski '17

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With semester one over, you can think about the fact that we’re halfway through to summer or you can prepare yourself for a new, strong start. While you may stress over your first semester grades and comments, it’s best to focus on how you can improve. Here are some tips to starting off strong:

  1. Study by yourself; being with friends or classmates distracts more than it helps.

  2. Turn the WiFi off, so you don’t lose focus and end up browsing the Internet rather than writing a paper.

  3. Put your phone somewhere where it won’t distract you. If you need your phone to ask a friend a question, put it on silent so you don’t drop everything to answer texts or Instagram posts every time you hear your phone buzz.

  4. Go to the library. Being in a quiet, productive atmosphere will motivate you to get your work done. Also, there are many helpful resources all around you, including books, librarians and online textbooks. The Medfield Public Library has entire teen section in their basement level, with quiet study rooms that you can sign out.

  5. Start with the hardest subject. If you start out by tackling the hardest material, then, by the end of the night when you’re exhausted, you will only have the easier stuff left.

  6. Make a schedule. Write out how much time you’re going to spend on each subject, and have a set bedtime goal.

  7. Have a clear work space. A cluttered work area leads to a cluttered mind. Organize papers, and put graded work into a folder so you’ll know where it is if you need it. Put books on a shelf with the titles facing out, so when you need it, it will be right there.

  8. Exercise. When you exercise you work off energy and get your blood flowing. Therefore, you will be less jittery and jumpy trying to get your work done.

  9. Start early. I, like many people, have looked at an assignment and said “Oh it’s due in a week — I don’t have to start it yet!” But even making an outline for that assignment can make all the difference. Write out what you want to do for this assignment, so when it’s due in a couple days, you don’t have to scramble and stay up all night to get it done. It’s always better to get ahead than to fall behind.

  10. If you’re going to listen to music, listen to music without words. The words clog up your mind and draw you away from what you need to do. Have you ever texted someone while listening to a song and you accidentally typed in some of the song lyrics? I know I have, and this clearly demonstrates that the words distract you.

Make a game plan for the new semester. Improve your study habits and reduce distractions. With better planning and organization, you’ll feel more on-top of your work, see your grades rise and get more sleep.

Check out the poll on the left column of The Looking Glass front page, and vote for your new semester resolution to improve your study habits.


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