Studying was something that I used to dread.
I was never really a big “studier” throughout high school. The only times I really studied was when I took AP Pyschology during my senior year. It wasn’t until then, I made sure that I would have the best notes that I could take, and tried to memorize every definition of every term.
Though, once I got to college, and my projects were more hands-on, I focused more on my art classes, and sort of pushed studying and lecture classes to the side. I still did well in my lecture classes, but knew I could be better. Before this school year started, I vowed to myself that I would invest in cute stationary to motivate myself to study hard. I also made a promise to myself to always try my best, and to avoid struggling by asking for help and reviewing notes. Here are a few things that I have found helpful in surviving lecture classes and taking useful notes:
This is so crucial in motivating yourself to take great notes! For weeks, I’ve been glossing over Studyblrs, analyzing what tools the bloggers use, and the spaces they use to work in. I went to Disneyland Hong Kong last weekend (post on that soon), mainly to get this Tsum Tsum-themed stationary set and other Disneyland merch. I’d gone a few weeks before school started, and eyed this super cute set. I told myself the next time I visited Disneyland, I would buy it.
It’s a 15-piece set, equipped with a notepad, two rolls of washi tape, a stapler, staples, two magnets, four mini sticky-note pads, and five character-themed hi-lighters. (I believe the characters are Lotso, Little Green Men, Stitch, Art–Monsters’ University–and Tigger. I mainly bought it for the Lotso hi-lighter because he’s my favorite Pixar character, and I love him so much.) I have yet to use any of the supplies, honestly, because it is just too cute to use. I will though, eventually.
Take Rad Class Notes
Another thing I used to do in Psych class was take extensive class notes, but only in Pysch. When it came to classes like math and history, I struggled to remember formulas and dates, because I relied on homework to keep my memory sharp. In math, for example, I would take my notes on the classwork, which was then turned in. For history, I thought reading the textbook would help me remember. Yet, it wasn’t until this year, I started copying everything down that was written on the board. Since I don’t get classwork anymore, and the majority of my homework is online, it is easier to focus and practice on one subject during class because there is no rush to turn in classwork, just to forget everything during homework time after class. I also throughly enjoy color-coding my notes, labeling super-important things/side-notes in a different color to help me remember.
Write Down All Assignments During Class
I have found this extremely helpful, because often times, professors/teachers will continuously remind you of due dates/important dates. Most of the time, this will happen for long-term projects, where the due date seems far away now, but will surely creep up on you when it’s too late. What I like to do is, write down each time the professor reminds of us of a due date…even if I don’t plan on working on the long-term project that day. For example, I have a big math presentation that isn’t until October, yet I keep writing it down, so that it gets stuck in my mind to work on it. Three weeks can easily fly by, and I don’t want to get caught off guard when the due date springs up on me.
Eat Before You Study
Often times, I have found that trying to study on an empty stomach–or even function in class without breakfast–is extremely difficult. I will admit that my eating schedule has been thrown for a huge curve since moving to Hong Kong. I barely eat any meals, mainly because I’m too busy adventuring, or working on math. BUT, I did go to the grocery store to buy some breakfast, so I should be okay for at least a week. Studying on a empty stomach is probably not the best because you’ll become more fatigued and unfocused. Instead, I recommend eating a meal (for when the study load will be heavy) or a light snack (for when you’re going to be reviewing notes or completing an assignment), in order to have a successful study session. My go-to study “sninner” (snack-dinner) is udon noodles with soy sauce and milk tea. SO GOOD, and keeps me full for an entire study session. Some study snacks I recommend are grapes/small fruits, cheese, crackers, cereal, yogurt, raw veggies. I would try to stay away from chocolate and candy, because even though it’s tempting, those foods don’t provide you with enough energy to power through a study session.
Take Rad Home Notes
For assignments like long readings or comprehension questions, I definitely recommending writing in symbols and color-coding. Below are some notes from Art History taken from a reading about Russian theatre, Paris Dada, and Futurism. I had a test on it the next day and wanted to make sure that I fully understood the text. One thing that I’ve been doing in writing things down four times, in order to remember it. It is also said that writing out notes will improve your memory. I have found this to be true, and breezed right through my quiz. How I organize my notes is that I write a word down four times, alternating the color. I usually write a term in a neutral color (brown) and its meaning in a fun color (orange). I really like this method, and hope you find it helpful too. I also like to draw on my notes and make symbols. For example, Le Bon wasn’t about logical approaches, instead he was into visual approaches. So, of course, I drew Logic’s logo and crossed it out to help me remember Le Bon’s characteristics.
I wholeheartedly appreciate The Sweet Everythings suggesting that I make a study tips post. She’s literally the sweetest and was really supportive of this post! I am so grateful for those who are fully engaged in this blog to the point where they read to the end, and respond in the comments. Each time I get a comment, I am filled with so much joy and gratitude. You are all such amazing people, and I couldn’t have asked for a better community to be a part of.
If you’d like to see a shorter version of this post, you can check out my Instagram here, where I have posted some study tip pics. (Also big thanks to the lovely comments for my last post: getting lost & found in prince edward and my spontaneous adventures in hong kong post. I got to many positive feedback for these posts that I couldn’t be more grateful for!)
get lost. get found.