• The Cougar Chronicle

Studying Tips and Tricks

Margot Englander

Staff Writer



Studying is hard, but it doesn’t have to be! There’s a huge gap in schoolwork, homework, tests and quizzes between elementary school and middle school. Trust me, I’ve been there. However, the only reason you’re feeling so overwhelmed and incapable of studying correctly is because you’ve never learned how! Studying is a complicated process that is different for each person, but hopefully these tips and tricks from the heads of each department at Barrack will help you when you’re struggling!


When asked, most middle schoolers confessed that they only study when reviewing for a quiz or test. While this might work in 6th, 7th, and even 8th grade, it won’t be possible when you get to high school! So, you need to start learning effective studying methods now.


According to a survey sent to the middle school, most students found Core and Tanakh easiest to study for. On the other hand, Math, Hebrew, and JS were the hardest to study for this year. An overwhelming majority of students said that they study best with friends, which was definitely negatively impacted by COVID-19, as we have to maintain social distancing from each other.


But don’t despair. The teachers are here to help! Heads of every department, from Core and Math, to JST and Hebrew, emailed in to share the most helpful tips for studying for their specific subject.

Core:

  • Study several days before the test. That way you can ask your teachers questions about material you don’t understand.

  • Shorten each study session, but have more sessions over a larger amount of time.

  • Study your way! Study with a friend, by drawing pictures, by re-reading notes, or any way else that works for you.

Math:

  • Create an “everything you need to know” sheet. This way, you can refer back to it during your study time.

  • Go back through your notes, classwork, and homework problems. This will give you an idea of what is going to be on your test.

  • Reach out to your teachers for help, or if you would prefer another person, math tutoring is always available on certain days throughout the week.


Science:

  • Underline key words and questions to make sense of a complicated assignment or lab.

  • Try to make connections between the material and something in your life -- this will make it easier to remember.


Jewish Studies and Tanakh:

  • Try to explain concepts to someone else. If you can teach it, then you are more likely to remember it!

  • Put thought and ideas into your homework assignments. It is more important to understand a topic than to get a “right” idea.

  • Start on long-term topics sooner rather than later. This gives you a chance to figure out what you don’t understand!


Hebrew and World Language:

  • Study out loud. If you speak and use your mouth, this will increase your ability to understand something by involving your auditory memory.

  • Participate in every class. Class is the best time to learn and you can ask questions!

  • Review daily. Quizlet and your online Hebrew website will be your best resources!


Counseling and Learning Support:

  • Use fun ways to remember the ideas, such as mnemonics like HOMES, for the five Great Lakes (Huron, Ontario, Michigan, Erie, Superior).

  • Don’t cram! Study new blocks of information each day.

  • For “to do” lists, use index cards and write one thing on each card. Sort by order of priority. When you’re done, rip it up! This will help make tasks seem less intimidating.


Teachers, the students have also spoken out! Students were asked what teachers could do to help them study more effectively. These were the highlights of the responses:

  • Make study guides. This helps students know what information they should be studying, and what information is not needed.

  • Give reliable websites to help. When students are on their own studying, online is sometimes the best way. If teachers could provide websites where they know information is accurate, students can use these websites as a resource.

  • Explain directions on tests more clearly. Some mistakes come from just not understanding what is being asked of you. If teachers could explain confusing sections, this would lower the number of careless mistakes on assessments.

  • Give class time to study, specifically during in-person weeks. This one is pretty self-explanatory. Class time would increase the amount of time students have to study and would give them an opportunity to talk with friends, which is not always possible during the pandemic.


COVID-19 has impacted everything, including studying. Hopefully these studying tips help!




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