Test Taking Tips

Tools for Success

If you think you can do well in school, you’re right.  If you don’t think you can do well in school, you’re still right, but at Brunswick High we have help for you because we know that it is not a matter of brains, it’s a matter of  attitude.  You can get better grades with less effort, less pressure, and less anxiety if you follow this guide carefully.  Study smart, not hard.  An example would be: if two people were given the task to cut down a tree, one takes and ax, he works smart.  The other student takes a sledgehammer, he’s going to work harder.  Both got the job done.  Which student do you want to be?

From now on you’re going to work smart.  Learn to use the right tool to get better Grades:

Brain:  Learning can be fun and it’s what you do best. You began to learn when you were a baby. Believe in yourself. Set priorities. Learning should be fun and #1.

Creativity: The ways to learn are endless. Use your imagination to make your study time something to look forward to.

Goals: Your reach should exceed your grasp.  Make yourself stretch.  Write your goals. Make your goals specific. State your goals in all areas of your life, physical, mental, emotional, spiritual, family, social, money. Put your goals in time frames. Keep score. Let your goals belong to you alone

Exercise: Your body and your mind

Choices:  Choose classes and activities that you like when you get the opportunity.

Knowledge: Get to know and enjoy your teachers. They are not the enemy.

Speed: The first two weeks of school give everything you’ve got.  The rest will fall into place.  Use spare time well.  Don’t waste time.

Memory: Learn to train your memory by practicing acronyms, rhyming, linking ideas, using key words, and preparing pneumonic devices.

Reading Power: Underline important ideas, take notes while reading, and review your underlined material.

Study Time: Study according to your biological clock. Determine when you study best then take advantage of it. Study in short sessions. Study actively with pencil in hand. Review material. Study alone and in groups. Find the right environment to study.

Organization: Bring pen, pencil, and marker to every class.  Cover all books neatly. Have one notebook for each class. 3 ring binders work well as you can move materials when needed. Use an assignment book as provided by the high school or tape an assignment sheet to each notebook, use it. Keep your locker organized.  Have a book bag or two. One for each school color day.  Take notes with a purpose. Short notes using key words. Mark assignments, long term projects, and test dates on a desk calendar as well as in your assignment book. Revise your notes when studying. Organize and pull your material together in the evening. Use a milk crate at home to organize your school work into hanging file folders so that it will be available to you during mid-terms and final exams.  Save all homework, quizzes and test papers dated during the year and placed by subject into your milk crate. Throw nothing away until the semester ends.

Attendance: Don’t miss class, listen carefully, sit close to the front, be visible, be early, leave late, speak to the teacher.  If you should miss class borrow someone else’s notes.  Participate, stay alert, and have a great attitude.

Perfect Papers: Written work is a game of comparison between papers.  Write on front side of paper only, leave margins, name and date in top right hand corner. Skip lines between sections.  Always have someone double check your papers.  The appearance of your papers does make a difference.  Use a computer whenever possible.

Homework: Student achievement rises significantly when teachers regularly assign homework and students conscientiously do it. Home work is most useful when teachers carefully prepare the assignment, thoroughly explain it, and give prompt comments and criticism. The way you do your homework will greatly influence the way you learn. Adjust the way you study by:  The demand of the material and the teacher, the amount of time available, do not cram, connect new material to things you already know, break large tasks into smaller parts, and pass all work in on time.

Testing: Know what the test will cover and study the right things.  Answer study questions at the end of each chapter. Quiz with a partner.  Be prepared not nervous.  Be physically comfortable (bring a sweatshirt to class). Look over the whole test before beginning.  Read the directions carefully.  Put answers in the right places.  Budget your time, but don’t watch the clock.  Answer the questions you know first.  If you don’t know the answer, try eliminating before you guess. Leave the question and go back to it at the end of the test. Don’t become anxious about what you don’t know answer what you do know.  Go back over your test.  Learn from your mistakes.

Behavior: Are you an underachiever, hostile, aggressive, defiant, hyperactive, easily distracted, socially withdrawn or rejected, perhaps a class clown.  Turn this behavior around by concentrating on all of the tools for learning.

Relax: Relax during class and tests. The brain records all information.  If you relax you can find what you need. Relaxation after mental and physical exercise increases your mental preparation.  Avoid harmful substances.  Let someone know if you are feeling anxious.  There is help: friends parents, teachers, counselors, administration are all willing to support and assist you.

Reward: reward yourself after studying and doing a good job on your homework.  Always use positive self talk.

Responsibility: If you perceive yourself as being in control of your own destiny you will be responsible for your own learning and you will be motivated to continue learning new skills.  Don’t blame your teachers.  Your grades are your paycheck.  You get what you work for.