The new year is in – are old habits out?

Juleisy V.

Staff Writer

As much as a student may dread the fact, second semester has arrived, and there is plenty of work yet to be done. This is a chance for students to be able to redeem themselves and achieve the grades that they were hoping for. If first semester was too stressful, there is still time to make sure that the issue does not repeat. Prioritizing, time managing, note taking techniques, and organization can make an immense difference. Effective study skills are essential and can become a life-saver when college rolls around, so it is never too late to create a beneficial habit.

Time comes and goes, so why not make it productive? At some point in time, all students look back at a day they could have done something worthwhile. Instead, that time was put to waste because of procrastination. “Do not let the time slip by if you have the time to study,” says sophomore Cody Clark.  Procrastinating always has its many downsides, and while it is difficult to get rid of such a habit, there are strategies. The more effective method to avoid this time management issue is by reserving a certain number of hours or a specific hour to get work done. Time management is the key for successful studying, and once established as a routine, it becomes a very fruitful habit.

Each student’s schedule is different, but once organized, more work can be done. After school activities, hobbies, and time to sit back and relax can all fit when arranged accordingly.  GettinNew Semester 2 JVMg an agenda is an effective start, as it works as a visual to keep everything more simple to work with. When students arrange dates and times, they can make sure that nothing gets left out and can even plan time to simply relax. To-do lists can be added to these agendas to keep the subjects prioritized and make everything less stressful. Being committed, however, is the most important part. When assigned an extensive project, it is best not to make plans to go out when a task requires a considerable amount of attention and cramming. “Remember if you have good notes, are organized and have vocabulary to practice every day, you will be a successful student,” says Ms. Sonya Breaux, Spanish teacher. There may be the slight chance of an inopportune obstacle popping up out of nowhere that could throw away what little available time is left. Spacing out study times guarantees a better understanding of the material and relieves the pressure of having to cram every detail right before the day an assignment is due.

Once organized, almost nothing can go wrong – that is if the correct material is being studied.

To understand the material, notes are essential, though the most effective method differs from student to student. The worst mistake would be to not take any notes and the student risk leaving out important ideas and end up being completely unprepared.  When everything available is at hand, a well-rounded understanding of all the information will be possible. Actually understanding what is being studied will end up being more helpful in the long run. Attending review sessions can help even more. “Coming to just one review session can help how you look at the material and even find your way,” said Mrs. Ashley Dexter, social studies teacher. Besides, a little extra information can never hurt anyone.

Having all these study tips down, all that is left is to create a study environment unique and effective to a student’s needs. The agenda can help this by keeping the goals set and in sight. Concentrating on the subject can be especially difficult if too many distractions surround the students. “I get on my phone, and I just get distracted, and it just wastes too much time,” comments sophomore Johan Avila.  Distractions such as phones, televisions, and other electronics should be kept out of reach or simply not in use. Instead of using a phone for researching, try replacing it with a laptop to prevent all those distracting notifications from popping up. Constant commotion is rather distracting when it comes to studying because the mind is not completely focused on what it should be. Therefore, a quiet environment is vital when getting tasks done.

Second semester is a second chance to make up for everything that could have been accomplished in the first two quarters. There is plenty of time before final exams and other milestones come along, so it is easy to be well prepared. The time has come for cramming to end. It is time to stop procrastinating and become more productive for this new year that awaits. Starting off right will definitely help create a less stressful semester, and students may end up being more successful altogether from beginning to end. Organizing and studying effectively may even help prepare for the more immense tasks that await in the future.


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