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how not procratinate durning midterms

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7 Answers

I have a full list of time-management and procrastination tricks on my blog, but for freaking out during midterms, here's my top three:


1. Stay Active!

Whether we like to admit it or not, your brain is contained within an actual physical body. And that body is designed to move. So don’t just cram it into a desk chair and leave it there all day. Get up. Move around. Stretch your legs, do some cartwheels, jump on your bed. On your breaks, take a walk to visit a friend, or go outside and lie under a tree. Do somersaults in the park. Anything. Just make sure you keep moving. I recommend that you get up and move for at least 5 minutes out of every hour that you are sitting. Moving around not only shakes the kinks out of your muscles and joints, it can also shake the kinks out of your mind. I even have one friend who does a handstand whenever she runs out of ideas, and you know what? It really works.

2. Change the Scenery
We all have our favorite places to work; the place we study best, the place we do our best writing. Know where your favorites are, but don’t be afraid to change it up every once in a while. Having trouble understanding that math concept? Take your books outside and sit under a tree for a while. Maybe those fractal equations make more sense when you look up at the tree branches. Need to edit your rough draft? Print it out and take it with you. Sit on a porch or patio, go to a library or coffee shop, crash on a friend’s couch. Change your scenery and you just might change your perspective.

And last, but most important…

3. There’s Always Time For Happiness
It’s easy when you have a heavy workload to get so bogged down in your assignments that you forget to have fun. Happiness really can make your work seem easier and more pleasant, even if it’s not. Don’t forget to do the things that you enjoy, and make a little time in your day to goof off.  Stay above the stress, take deep breaths, and you'll be fine!

An exam is there to show what you know. At this point you should be reviewing what you have already learned and making it solid in your mind. The first thing to do is relax when taking a test and take a deep breath. Look at all the answers and assess what you know and tackle the first one that seems hardest to you, unless you are doing a multiple choice, in which case you would answer them in the way they are given. Also, if the teacher has told how many points each answer is worth, work on the ones that you know and that have the most points early on, so when you are tired you will coast downhill mentally. A little nervous energy can be good if you use it to your advantage, so don't worry about being nervous. Everybody at some  point gets nervous and it is a natural response to something that is stressful. If you have time at the end, re-read and proofread your answers, you might find errors that you could have made. Study a little, but don't cram for it. Cramming will just turn it all into gibberish in your mind and you won't do well....
 
 
 
 
 
An important idea to remember when studying for any test is don't wait to the last minute to study. Study  at least a week in advance depending on the length. Also make sure you eat something before you start studying, preferably something with protein and fiber in it. This will help you focus better. Take a break every twenty minutes to do something else like listen to music because this will help you process the information better. Use drawings and pictures and connect them to your notes. Finally, go to bed around 7-9 p.m. in the evening; so, you at least get a good 9 hours of sleep the night before the test.
                                                                     Nancy N.

Great question! Procrastination and cramming really don't work very well. Why? Recent brain research suggests that we build memories and understanding while we sleep. Breaking up your study into smaller chunks over multiple nights gives you a chance to sleep and absorb much more effectively. But to do this, you've got to avoid procrastination...

1) Plan your study sessions AND your breaks

Sometimes we set unrealistic study goals and it looks so intimidating that we never start. Instead, tell yourself that you'll only study a certain amount and then you'll treat yourself with a short, fun activity

2) Get sleep

We tend to procrastinate more and become less efficient when we're tired and cranky. If you're rested and well fed, you'll be more motivated and efficient

3) Turn off the internet/smart-phone/TV 

Try not to study with a smart phone and open web browser in front of you. Also, consider ditching your favorite radio station. It's too tempting to focus on the fun and fritter away your study time. To help yourself focus, close the browser, shut off the phone, and turn on some classical music on the repeat loop setting. Many students unwittingly procrastinate away their study time by trying to have their cake and eat it too with 1/2 studying and 1/2 working sessions. Instead, set shorter study sessions but focus completely on studying and then reward yourself with a REAL break!

First make a simple study guide.  Write down topics or questions that will be asked on the exam.  After you know what you are looking for it is much easier to find the answer.  Write down the important principles from each topic for the course you are studying.

Now I know how difficult it is to sit down and read through a text book so make it interesting.  Find you favorite snack (like Swedish fish or M&Ms) and place them a couple of paragraphs apart.  Now when you get to that paragraph you get you snack, it provides a little motivation.  Most importantly remember to take a break from studying when you find you mind wandering.  It is important to study when you can pay full attention so feel free to stretch or run a lap around your house to wake yourself up.  Sleep well before you exam and eat a good meal.  Good luck and believe in yourself. 

Make a simple list of what you will be tested on, first by subject, then by topic under each subject.

Prioritize that list - use a highlighter (or similar) to clearly mark which you think will be the most important subjects and topics

Look at only the highlighted ones:  which of these are you most uncertain of, uncomfortable about, feel you know the least about?  Mark these

Use your available resources to study and practice ONLY those highlighted and marked items:  in-school and after-school free tutoring and study halls, online resources (a simple Google search will usually show you a valid answer for almost anything!), your own textbooks (use Table of Contents and Indices).  Ask for help - plenty of people love to do that, including in this forum;  join or form a study group - some of your classmates and friends will know how to do stuff you don't, and vice-versa.

 

Best of luck, which will come to you if you prepare!

 

 

Comments

Don't forget to eat a healthy breakfast and take some peppermints/chocolate and a water bottle with you. =D The brain needs sugar and water to function. 

Relax. Like you said it is the first midterm so it is understandable that you might be nervous. Do not let the word midterm scare you. First, make sure you have everything you need to study. If you don't then contact a classmate or check with the teacher. Maybe you can stay after school and check with the teacher. Depending on your studying preferences you might want to ask a classmate or two to study together. If you prefer to study by yourself, find the right place for you and make a plan. Do not try to do everything at once. Make a plan and create times to study. Take breaks, have snacks available and rest. Also, find the time of day that is best for you. Some people prefer to study early in the morning, others prefer to make  study night.