How to Not Fail Your Classes

How to Not Fail Your Classes

Shruthi Krishnamurthy, Staff Writer

School is hard. Everyone knows that. And all students need a little bit of help to not fail their classes. So here are some tips to not fail your classes:
All-Nighters
They’re useful tools to undo the mistakes of last night’s procrastination. All-nighters can help you cram for a test, write a paper, or create a project. When on an all-nighter, remember: coffee is your friend. Energy drinks can only offer you future health problems. If you can listen to music while you work, it can help you stay awake. Leave on as many lights as you need to keep you awake and productive. Eat some snacks and take breaks if you have the time.
Study Groups
This is a great way to work on homework and other assignments. Two or more heads are better than one. The way another person perceives the assignment and/or the content of the study material can be helpful. Talking about things other than your studies is perfectly okay to make studying easier and not as boring. Try not to get too off topic though. The best setting for a study group is somewhere quiet, but not completely silent. Instead of going to a library, which is a great place for individual studying, try a coffee shop or someone’s house.
Notes
Notes are important because it’s not always best to look at your textbook to study for a test. Notes should be detailed, but not too descriptive. Notes are for you, so just make sure it’s enough for you to understand; you won’t need everything. Try to make your notes interesting to keep your attention when studying. Use colored pens and highlighters to make your notes easy to look at. Making your notes neat also makes studying a lot easier and faster, because you won’t have to waste your time trying to decipher your notes. It’s also important to reference your textbook when taking notes. You textbook is your guide in class, so it can help you fill in the gaps of your notes.

These tips are helpful and apply to all classes. But if you’re already following this advice and/or are struggling in a certain subject, here are some subject specific tips:
History
This class is centered around your textbook and your teacher’s lectures, so it’s important to take notes on both. When you’re taking textbook notes, remember to write down the main topics of each section. When you’re taking notes on your teacher’s lectures, only write down the major concepts. Trying to write down every word your teacher says won’t help you, but if you write down some of it, your textbook can help you fill in those gaps. It’s also important to read summaries of texts or to ask classmates how they would summarize the texts. This can help you to understand the reading from another perspective.
English
English is very similar to history in some respects. For example, when reading short stories, novels, poems, and other texts, taking notes is very important. Take notes of plots, twists, irony, or any fundamental literary devices. For vocabulary, Quizlets can help you learn your words. Also, many languages derive from Latin or contain Latin influences, so your language class could help you understand your vocabulary words.
Math
Many people feel that there is no real way to study for math. Which really isn’t true. Reviewing overall concepts can be helpful. Read through your notes and identify the new math skills you’ve learned in the chapter. If there are any you don’t quite understand, try some of the practice problems from your textbook that reflect those skills. If you think you’re ready for your test, try the chapter test at the end of your chapter in your textbook. If there are any problems you get wrong, try some more like them from the corresponding chapter. If you get the chapter right, then you’re on your way to not failing!
Science
Chemistry
Previous chemistry student, Jillian Cetrulo, recommends using quizlet to learn chemical compounds, polyatomics, and other chemistry terms. She also recommends using YouTube to find helpful videos about topics you don’t understand. The textbook can help, but if you’re having a hard time understanding the textbook, a video can help.
Biology
AP Biology student, Kathryn De Stefano, recommends using floral scents and candles when studying, as it helps you to remember material. She also recommends finding examples of the material you’re learning and how it works in nature because it will help you remember the terms on a test.
Physics
Physics is very similar to a math class. In fact, physics is kind of like an applied math class. Make sure to do chapter test questions and to do problems like the ones you don’t do well on. Understanding the chapter’s concepts is important because you need to be able to figure out how to use the equations you’re given to solve problems. It’s also good to know the concepts from multiple standpoints and how each one relates to the world around you. This can also help you understand how to solve problems in relation to your chapter. If you’re having trouble finding real-life situations that relate to your chapter, YouTube can help.

These tips can help you, but it’s important to remember that you can always ask your teacher for help.