How To Get Better Grades For Your Assignments: Advice From A Straight-A Student
How do those straight-A students do it? Are they just really smart? Do they stay up all night working and studying? Don’t they have a social life? You’d be surprised how many top students are just as smart as you are: we just work smarter, not harder! Here are the secrets that straight-A students use to get amazing grades on their homework and papers.
- Look at homework and essays as helping you, not hurting you.
- Take notes – lots of notes.
- Read the whole chapter, not just the parts that you’ll be answering questions about.
- Get organized.
- Don’t procrastinate.
The reason that teachers assign homework and papers isn’t because they want to make your life miserable. They want you to be prepared for the tests, and to be confident in class. Homework re-enforces everything you’ve been learning, so it sticks in your brain once the test rolls around. So don’t look at homework as a burden or a chore, look at it as a handy tool that helps you in the long run.
Take notes in class, and while you’re doing your readings at home. They don’t have to be neat, they don’t have to be perfectly organized, they just have to be good enough to help you. You don’t need to write down every word your teacher says, just the general gist. And when you’re reading your textbook at home, make a note of the most important information in each paragraph. This way, you can easily refer back when it comes down to writing a response, and you’ll remember just where you read that important bit of information. Plus, writing helps you remember things better, so you may not need to re-read the textbook at all!
Don’t take shortcuts, or you’ll end up working even longer and harder when it comes time to actually do the work. It’s easy to just scan the textbook looking for the section you need to write about, but your teacher will be able to tell that you didn’t read the whole chapter. When you read the whole chapter first, you can write more knowledgeable, well-rounded responses that take all the information into account, not just two paragraphs with no context!
Try having just one binder for all your classes instead of seventeen different folders and notebooks. Half the time people waste all their energy looking for the right papers and books and then don’t have time to do a good job on their assignment! If you have all your notes, assignments, and information right in one place, you’ll save yourself a ton of time and effort.
Don’t keep putting off major assignments: start them right away. If your teacher gives you a week to write an essay and you don’t start until the night before, you’re putting a whole lot more stress on yourself, and you just won’t have time to do a good job. It can be hard to motivate yourself to start your work on time, but think about it like this: working one hour every night can save you from having to work eight hours in one night! Also, when you work on an assignment slowly, over time, it’ll turn into a much more polished, well-done project because you have plenty of time to think and come up with new ideas.