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8 months ago
Paying for College
[edited]

Tips for staying ahead and focused in class
Answered

Does anybody have tips on how to stay on top or ahead of your work? Also how to stay focused and initiated to do your work. It feels like I have tried everything! I want to get into a good college on stacked scholarships, I don't think that will happen if I cant stay focused.

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5 answers

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Accepted Answer
8 months ago

Hello! Here are some things to try:

- Breaks are super important! The pomodoro technique ( https://pomofocus.io/app ) incorporates breaks into your homework sessions and makes it a lot more enjoyable. You do 25 minutes of work then 5 minutes break 4 times and then you get a longer break--the link I included above does this for you. In the breaks, I usually read a chapter of a book, get a snack/drink, or clean my room. Try to stay away from social media because it's too easy to get distracted and interrupt your flow. It's also really satisfying to look back on your day and realize you found time to read for fun! One thing I will say about this is it's kind of a "skill" you have to learn. I've tried Pomodoro in the past but it didn't really stick the first few times because I didn't do it every day. Doing it every day for about 1-2 weeks has helped it stick for me this time around!

- https://www.squibler.io/dangerous-writing-prompt-app/ is a website I use for brainstorming and free-writing. If I'm ever dreading writing an essay, I set the timer for 5 minutes and I do a flow of consciousness response to the prompt--the website deletes your progress if you stop writing for over 5 seconds, so there's good incentive to just keep writing anything that comes to your brain. It doesn't have to be polished or grammatically correct or anything, it just has to be a starting point. I find that my first few sentences have a lot of "so" and "um," but as the time goes on I'm starting to write sentences that make sense and could be used in an actual essay. Doing this also just helps you understand the prompt and get invested in a particular angle to approach the essay from.

- Become interested in the material. If you have a class that you have a hard time getting interested in (either consistently or just on a certain day), find some sort of media you can consume casually to get yourself in the mindset of that subject. This can be a podcast (I use The Titanium Physicists Podcast for physics), a movie (Hidden Figures!), an article, or a YouTube video. It doesn't have to be on exactly the unit you're doing in class, just the subject in general. For example, with the podcast I mentioned before, I might listen to an episode about black holes while cleaning the kitchen and then go work on some magnetic fields problem sets. I also did this kind of thing with my college essays, where I alternated between writing and reading a really well-written fictional book, which helped with creativity and getting in flow of things.

- https://collegeinfogeek.com/start/ has a lot more tips on productivity and studying, if you want more ideas!

I hope this helps, good luck!

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7 months ago

I love to have apps to block out unnecessary distractions when I have work. They usually lock down your phone for a certain amount of time but let you out if you have an emergency. Also give yourself rewards for getting a certain amount of stuff done! That's how I am catching up near the end of the year.

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1
8 months ago

For me, I take an hour break after I finish a few short assignments or after one long assignment. Having background noise also helps me stay on top of my assignments.

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7 months ago

As a valedictorian, some of the things that I find extremely helpful is to have a study group with peers I know that are able to stay focused. In a sense, iron sharpens iron this way since they help keep me focused long enough to finish my assignments. Pair up with some of the students who really understand the material and are focused in class. Some of the most helpful websites I use to supplement my learning in the classroom are Quizlet, Quizizz, and Fiveable (for AP classes).

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8 months ago

This is a tough question, and is different for every person. Some people like taking notes, for other this only distracts them more.

I would suggest just really paying attention to what the teacher is saying and at the end of the class period, right a 1 page summary of what you've learned. Knowing that you have to write the summary should keep you focused. Maybe have a sheet of paper to jot down quick notes to help you remember but DO NOT write every word the teacher is saying or even all the content he is talking about.

I hope this helps, and good luck!

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