Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Planning for 2012: The Academic Guide

IN an attempt to correct the mistakes of last year and to create a new path for ourselves, we must try to make plans. These plans may be either long or short term but the common thread is that we all intend to be successful in our endeavours.

TEENage would like to highlight the fact that in order to truly start the year off right, one should create these plans in advance so that there is already a blueprint at the start.

TEENage will be taking you through a two-part planning session, where we will guide you in making plans for the year.

The pursuit of education is a central part of our lives. Whatever the level, we are constantly being tested, whether with major exams or internal tests, on how much we know and how well we can apply that knowledge to given situations. We all try to be prepared from the start of the semester but sometimes we fall into the seemingly comfortable grasp of procrastination.

TEENage would like to give you a step by step plan to achieve academic success, and more importantly a balance between your school life and social life. We deem this important as the best students both work hard and play hard.

The first step is to know your school schedule. If you are someone who doesn't have a flexible schedule then you have to work around it. If you are someone who chooses your schedule then the key thing to do is to arrange it in such a way that you have good contact hours while getting enough time to do personal studying and extra-curricular activities.

The second step is to set up a personal study timetable that works for you. This tends to be the most difficult as with assignments and tests, one might find it difficult to concentrate on topics being covered currently versus where you are in your studying. Your personal study time should be aimed at breaking down the topics into a bite-sized version so it is easier to retain. Plan to do a little a day.

Discipline plays a critical role in this, because if you are consistent and do a little a day it will be easier than trying to absorb a lot all at once.

Study groups or study partners also can be of great assistance when trying to make the workload easier and more interesting. The key to a good study group is that everyone contributes and everyone brings their own expertise on topics to the table.

The third and final step is to make space for downtime. This is the most critical aspect of a student's life and this is where extra-curricular activities and socialising come into play. Relaxation and having fun not only releases stress, but also build endorphins (your body's natural energy booster) to conquer the mountain of work you have to do.

On the days when you have long school hours, these are the days when relaxation and recreation are important so as to refuel you for the next day.

The main criterion for this time spent is that it should be all about being active and taking time for you.

TEENage strongly advises that in your pursuit of academic excellence this year you should plan ahead, factoring in time for your studying and personal enjoyment. Success awaits you, you just have to plan for it and be consistent.




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