Today I wanted to share a few tips that I have for students in middle school, high school, and possibly even college! As a senior I feel like I have a good grasp at what to do and don't do!
Always do extra credit that is offered- I cannot tell you how many times a simple extra credit assignment has helped my grade, even by a small point or two. But don't expect the teachers to give you extra credit assignments if you do poorly on a test or project, do them before you need them! One of my teachers gives about 2-3 per year, so I know ALWAYS to take advantage of any opportunity I get, because I will thank myself later. Another teacher lets you get a tiny bit of extra credit on each homework assignment, but I generally don't do those since it doesn't add up to much, and I can always do it one day to boost my grade a bit if it goes down.
Talk about your grade- Did you do poorly on a math test? Go ask the teacher to explain how you got each question wrong. Most will be happy to go over it with you and help, and sometimes they will realize they made a grading mistake and you get a point or two back. Regardless, it will help you to go over your mistakes! Also, if you don't get a grade you think you deserve, talk to the teacher about it. I have seen many students get their grade raised by arguing their points to the teacher, specifically in English class or a class like that where the rules aren't set in stone.
Go to as many school events as possible- This is something I am trying to improve on this year. In the past I have always made excuses like "Oh I have so much homework!" or "I need to catch up on blogging and T.V. (lol)." But I promise you won't regret it! Obviously you should try to attend dances and bigger events, but I am even talking about smaller events. I go to a small school so basically everyone knows everyone. So sometimes I will even go to a basketball game or something without my group of friends or without knowing if anyone I am close to will be there (gasp!) just because I know there will be someone to sit by and catch up with! If you go to a bigger school this could be a great way to get to know new people even!
Keep a few dollars on hand at all times- I recommend keeping a five or a ten in your backpack just in case you realize you don't have a lunch, you need to pay someone back, or you need to pay for a school event/activity that you forgot about!
It is completely fine to skip a day or leave early- If you are feeling sick or the weather is awful (aka lots of snow or ice, not just a few raindrops) it is okay to stay home. Personally I like to skip days where I am not reviewing big tests or quizzes in any classes because you can't really make up review time! It is easy to make up the actually quizzes or homework though!
Keep your locker/backpack organized- I use this organizer in lime green and royal blue in my locker and I have since 7th grade. Whenever people see it for the first time they think its so neat because my locker is literally never messy. Now I am an organized person, but this helps keep everything nice and neat! I highly recommend getting a shelf of some sort and cleaning it out every month or so.
Use your resources wisely- Are the answers to a set of problems in the back of the book? They are there for a reason so use them if you are stuck or if you aren't sure that your answer is right! Many times I can figure out how they got that answer even if it doesn't show how to. Also, Google has saved me so many times. Fun fact: my chemistry teachers took questions that were already out there on the internet and used those on our quizzes. He didn't even change anything. So I would always just google the review guide and ace the quiz because I would study the answers that Google gave.
Keep an extra pencil in your bag for emergencies- I can't tell you how many times I have gotten to class only to realize my pencil is out of lead or my pen ran out of ink. I try to keep at least a few writing utensils in my bag at all times because especially by the end of the year everything is lost or used up!
Have extra calculator batteries for big test days- Fun Fact: My sophomore year I was taking a math final and my calculator DIED on me. Right in the middle of the test. Luckily me teacher was understanding and loaned me one but oh my gosh I thought I was a goner. Now I always change my batteries right before finals, big tests, or ACTs!
Take an ACT class to prepare- Someone in my town offers a great ACT class and I took it before I took the ACT. I am assuming it helped because I scored pretty high on my ACT. At the very least, be sure to take a few practice tests! (If you take the SAT instead of the ACT, I would still recommend this.)
What lessons have you learned in school? Share in the comments!