December 16, 2022
Jenna Forss | Writer
Dear SCHS student, I am just like you, the last thing I want to do when I get home is start doing more work-let alone try to cover the accumulative material of my classes for upcoming finals. I feel like kicking back on the couch to watch my favorite show or scroll on my phone sounds like a much more appetizing afternoon.
Let me be honest with you, the second scenario described is what tends to happen most afternoons for myself and most other students. I mean, I don’t blame you or me. Junior Mika Kuhne describes how she feels as if she is “on a constant cycle of seven hours at school doing work, then seven more hours at home doing more work”. After a long day full of rigorous learning there is nothing you want to do more than just relax, but that mound of homework you know you will have to eventually get done is getting in your way.
Over these past couple of weeks, I have experimented with many study tips and tricks to try and crack down on any of my recent impending homework assignments. Here are some of the tips I have personally found to be the most successful.
1. Write a To-Do List– Organizing your assignments is a quick and easy way to put you in an unstressed, ready-to-work mindset. A special trick I have learned is to make your homework to-do list start with the assignment you want to do the least and end with the easiest, most desirable task you have. With this method, you can knock out the assignments you dread and finish everything on your list even when you grow tired from the rest of your homework because the last assignment takes little brainpower.
2. Just Get Started!– Many students have foreboding thoughts about just sitting down and doing their homework. As Junior Sierra Peters puts it, “I’ll subconsciously do anything to stop myself from starting my homework.”. By internalizing this feeling, some will do anything in their power to stop themselves from doing homework, punishing their future selves. A lifesaving trick I have picked up is to set a timer for 5 minutes and force yourself to start your activity. Once the timer stops, you can stop whatever you are doing, but once you are already started it is unlikely you’re going to want to stop. Turns out the most problematic part of the process was starting.
3. Pomodoro Study Technique– This was one of the first study techniques I acquired on my journey to an academically
efficient life that completely changed the way I approach after-school work. To put it simply, 25 minutes of the “Pomodoro” timer is dedicated to studying and after it is completed there is a 5-minute break in between. During the 25 minutes duration, you must be completely focused on the task at hand, and during the 5-minute intervals, you do anything but your work. These short breaks allow you to walk around, stretch, or even lay your head down to catch some quick shut-eye. To stay as focused as possible and get the most out of your time, the Pomodoro Study Technique is the way to go.
4. Start and End Times– Create start and ends times for your study activities and write them down on your to-do list (and stick to them!). For example, let’s say you have two assignments to work on, one project for English and one project for History. You plan on dedicating strictly one hour to each project because you know that is the allotted amount of time you need that day. Let’s say you start at 4 and want to end at 6. With an end goal in sight, you will work more productively knowing once you get to 6 you are homework free.
I hope you can take at least one of these tips with you on the way to reviewing for your finals. Good luck and happy studying!