12 to do list for every year of High School
High school might not seem all that important, but you can set yourself up for success later by learning good study habits now.
Whether you’re a freshman, sophomore, junior or senior, it’s not too late to build good study habits that will serve you will later in your college career. High school is the time to learn important organization skills as well as learn the basics of math, English, science and social studies. Here are three important lessons for you to learn as you go throughout your high school life.
- Start using a planner right now. If you don’t have a notebook-style planner, get one today. Start writing down all of your assignments and referring back to it each day. Try to write something for each subject. If you don’t have homework that night in one subject, just write “no homework.” Phones don’t count. Actually writing things down by hand helps them stay in your memory.
- Buy a big calendar for your room. Get a monthly calendar – a big one – and hang it in a prominent space in your room. Make a habit of writing down the dates for all your projects and tests, as well as social events like concerts or extra-curricular activities. Having all these events at a glance will help you visualize what you need to get done for the week.
- Figure out who’s good at what subject. One of your greatest helps when you study will be your friends. Take some time to notice which of your friends excels in which subjects. That way, you can call them when you get stuck on a problem or partner up with them for projects.
- Start thinking about the SAT/ACT. You’ll probably take the SAT and/or ACT during your junior year, so it’s a good idea to start familiarizing yourself with the test now. Attend a learning session or hook up with a tutor that’s familiar with the exam. Take the PSAT if you have the opportunity – it’s a valuable experience that will get you ready for the most important test of your life so far.
- Spread out your study time. As you go through high school, life is going to get busier and busier. Learn now to spread out your study time instead of trying to cram all at once for an exam or project. Figure out when you have an hour or two each night to devote to reviewing material, then, spend that time uninterrupted in a quiet place with your books.
- Always be prepared. The Boy Scouts knew what they were doing when they made this their motto. Being prepared not only makes you look like a rock star, it helps your brain relax, distress and make room for learning. Spend some time each night figuring out what you’ll need for the morning and pack it the night before.
- Stop relying on extra credit. You know that question you always have about whether or not teachers will give extra credit? Stop asking it. Don’t rely on extra credit to pull your grades up, because in college, it don’t exist. You’ll be expected to complete your assignments and get the points rather than missing some and making them up later with extra credit points.
- Be deadline-oriented.Don’t even think about turning in assignments late. Late work isn’t something college professors accept, so stop accepting it from yourself. Keep your deadlines in mind at all times and give yourself enough time to complete the assignments and projects completely well before the due date.
- Get comfortable asking for help. In college, you really have to find the help you need. Whether it’s going to the library or writing center, finding a student tutor or asking professors for help, no one is going to come to you and ask if you’re “getting it.” Start asking for help now, and when you really need it, you won’t feel uncomfortable asking for assistance.
- Read everything you can – twice. Before now, you might have skated by with just skimming the text and looking for the answer you need to solve the problem or assignment. Now, you need to get into the habit of reading everything carefully. In college, you’ll need to fully understand everything you read on a deep level, so start now.
- Tutor someone else. They say you don’t really know a subject until you can teach it to someone else. So instead of making coffee for your job, try tutoring younger kids in a subject you excel in. It will help you retain knowledge and learn more about yourself and your abilities.
- Find help for your college admissions essays. You’ll need to write at least one essay to use for your college admissions application, so make it a good one. Ask your English teacher for help with writing it, or get a professional tutor to help. It’s important to make a good impression with your writing, so you’ll want to ensure you stand out with an excellent essay.