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To get good grades in school:

Preparation: Be prepared. Make sure you have what you need for the class. You will probably need the textbook, paper, something to write with, folder to hold your papers, and your homework assignments. Your teacher will fill you in if you need anything special. If it is a math class, you might need a certain calculator. Ask your teacher to see if he or she wants you to have a certain brand or type. Another part of being prepared is being on time to class with needed materials and your completed homework, all ready to turn in.

Classroom: Pay attention to everything the teacher says! I cannot stress how important it is to be paying attention to what they are teaching you. Participate in class discussions if you have something worthwhile to add. Don't be a smart aleck about this since you don't want to just restate something that someone already said and sound like you're trying to a funny guy. Listen to answers the other students give to the questions since this may open you up to new ways of thinking. Pay attention during class, especially during lectures. If your teacher says that something is important or that it will be on the test, take note of that. Don't goof off or misbehave as that will not likely help your grade point average.

Note Taking: Make sure that you have enough paper and writing utensils. Create your own shorthand to speed up your writing. Don't worry about neatness since they are simply your notes. You don't need to write down every single word your teacher says but write down what he/she writes on the board especially, or any special facts you think you might need for a quiz/test. IMPORTANT: Write in your own words. This way it will help you learn it more by actually thinking about what you are writing rather than just verbatim. If you are concerned about neatness, you can always rewrite them later. If the teacher draws a diagram, you should probably draw one, too. If the teacher seems to be stressing something, highlight it or put a little star by it. Just do something so that you can see that it is important. Take good notes. That means pay attention! It is sometimes easy to get distracted by just about anything. But good notes are easier to study off of than chicken scratched ones with pictures of dinosaurs doodled in the margins.

Attendance: Do NOT skip school. You will be missing out on stuff. It is true that you could make up the work, but you will have more work and you have missed lectures and in-class movies. You especially don't want to have to make up a science lab. Also, try not to be late for class. Most likely your teacher won't appreciate it and you will a) make the rest of your class behind or b) get yourself behind. And you do not want that, now do you?

Homework: Always do your homework.That one seems obvious, but you not only get graded on it, it also helps you understand (and of course, remember things for the test). It has a dual benefit. That is one of the best ways to raise your grade, which will in turn, raise your GPA. Do it on time, and write neatly. Your teacher will greatly appreciate nice handwriting and might even be a bit more gracious with giving you partial credit for an incorrect answer. Check over your homework if you need to. This especially applies to math classes. It also shows the teacher that you are serious about earning a good grade in the class.

Extra Credit: If your teacher offers extra credit, do it. You don't know when or if they will offer it again. Some teachers offer it only periodically. Most will not give it to you on an individual basis. You might not feel like you need it now, but you never know when you might want a couple extra points in the future after a bad test score. So many people scoff at extra credit, but then they regret not taking it. Don't be one of these people.

Projects: Start your project early, so you have plenty of time to finish it. The worst thing you can do is to wait till the last minute. Ask your teacher if you have any questions on the requirements. If you get a checklist of things you need to do or include, make sure that you use it.

Studying for Tests and Quizzes: Study before the test is announced. Once you go over something, you know that you will be tested on it in some form. Just study a little bit every day and make a habit. Study more than just a cram session the night before the test or exam. This is not as effective as studying several nights before for little amounts of time. Studying in little chunks each night is also easier to schedule for. That way, it will be easier to study when test time is announced. This will also help you a lot if a pop quiz is announced. Study in ways that help you. There are so many ways: flashcards, study sheets, rereading notes and textbook, forming a study group, making up possible questions, etc. Find some study techniques that work for you and stick with them. If you make flashcards or some other study tool, you should save it to use when you are studying the information again for the semester exam. I cannot stress this enough that studying leads to better test grades which leads to better overall grades.

Taking the Test (Test Taking Tips): Try to stay calm. Some people have terrible test anxiety. Relax and you should be albe to remember more. Always get enough sleep the night before the test and eat something for breakfast, even if it just an apple or some toast. Being hungry or tired breaks your focus. Show up for the test a little early. This will assure that you are on time and have a couple minutes to do a quick refresher. Bring your needed materials. That means pencils/pens, an eraser, an approved calculator, etc. Be a good test taker.

Organization: Stay organized. I have seen so many unorganized students do poorly because they do it and then cannot find it. Keep your old homework, handouts, and notes in a folder or binder, not your book. I am going to say this again: Do NOT keep all your papers in the back of the textbook. This makes it harder to stay organized, and it is hard on the book's binding. One thing that might help you is if you color code things. For example, if your history book is red, then you should have a red folder and red notebook for that class. That way you won't grab the wrong thing by mistake.

Attitude: Keep a good attitude on things. If you have an "I don't care about school or this class" type attitude, then teachers will be less willing to help you with problems or offer you extra credit. The same goes for lazy attitude. Have a respectful attitude to the teacher and other students. Try not to laugh when other students make a mistake since it is rude and makes people think less of you.

Sleep: Get some sleep on school nights. Your body and mind need sleep to function properly. So do yourself a favor and get some sleep at night, not during math class.

Where to Sit in the Class: I know this sounds like an odd tip to put out, but sometimes where you sit can make a difference. If you find that you cannot focus if you sit towards the back, try moving up to the first few rows. I know that most students will freak out when they read this since they avoid the front row like the plaque. Sitting in the first few rows will help you focus. There are more distractions in the back, and you'll be more likely to goof off. It will also allow you to see and hear better.

If sitting by your friends distracts you from what is happening in class, you have a few options. You could try to ignore them, which might work but might also make them think that you are mad at them. You could ask them to leave you alone during class since you are trying to pay attention to raise your grade. If all else fails, you could talk to your teacher privately and ask if she or he could move you.

Ask Questions: If you don't understand, ask someone! Read your textbook and notes, and then if that fails, seek help. Ask a teacher, friend, classmate, parent, sibling, etc. You might also be able to find some tutorials on the internet that might explain it differently than your teacher. Whatever you decide to do, remember that you want to make sure that you understand it for when you are tested over it. You might feel stupid asking a question, but it is better to understand than to totally miss that on a test. Get a tutor if you need one. There's no shame in needing some help.

Avoid Distractions: When doing your homework, avoid the distractions. Some students say that the TV or radio helps them to do their homework or study, but the majority of students will just be distracted by this. It will most likely take you longer, and you won't remember the information as well. You can watch TV, listen to music, or even get on WikiAnswers after that homework is completed.

Assigned Readings: Always, always, always read the assigned readings! Sure, the teacher might never find out if you don't read them, but actually reading them will give you a leg up on the students that don't care enough to read. Plus, the teacher might give a pop quiz over last night's reading. You want to be prepared. Your teacher assigned them for a reason. Often, if they asssign something to read, that means they will lecture on it the next day. By reading it in advance, you will be more prepared and get more out of the lecture since the information won't be all new to you. I know that it is tempting to blow off those assigned readings, but by doing them, you will be better off.

Finals: Start way before the finals. When I say this, I mean earlier than the night before, which is what many students do. You need to slowly and surely review all the things that will be on the final in sections. Then, you need to review them all together. Use some of the same studying techniques you used for tests, just treat them as a huge test. On the night before the final, make sure to get a good night's sleep instead of staying up all night to cram. Your mind needs sleep to function properly.

Math Classes: I know it is tempting to just always use your calculators and not show any work. You can use the calcular some; that's not a big deal. However, you should show some work. That way you will know what you did right or wrong. So will your teacher. If you just write down a number, they don't know if you just made something up or if you just made a tiny calculating error (like saying 3+5=9) that made your answer a little off. They might give you partial credit for it if you used the right formula but just added wrong.

Assignment Notebook/Planner: Some schools give one of these to each student but some do not. If your school doesn't give you one, you need to get one of these to write down your assignments, upcoming tests, and project due dates. It doesn't have to be fancy. It could even be a spiral notebook with a page for each school day (or a half page, it all depends on how detailed you want to get). You could also go to an office supply store like Staples or OfficeMax or even a regular retailer like WalMart and find a cheap planner. When your teacher announces the assignment, immediately write it down so you don't forget. It doesn't have to be complex, just something like "Social Studies test next Tues," "Business project due on the 15th," "Spanish Club meeting after school tomorrow - Tell Mom I'll be home late," or "Math: pg. 342 #5-33, odds." Here are some more examples: "Math- page 249 #1-30 evens," Spanish quiz next Mon," "Cooking Club meeting tomorrow after school," "organized history notes," or "Biology- read pgs 103-107 in textbook." You can even use it for things like dentist appointments. You would be amazed how helpful the planner is. You won't forget about things. Then you won't be the unlucky student who forgot about the Algebra test and then has to wing it (and get a poor grade).

Keep Track of Your Grades: Keep old homework assignments so you have an idea of how you're doing in the class. Look at any progress reports you get. If you need to make improvements to the grade on the progress report, start immediately. Some schools will even allow you to check your grades on their school website (or through a program called Skyward) using your student ID number. If your school does this, check it at least once a week, so you won't be surprised if your grade is lower than what you expected once you get your report card.

Cheating: No, these are not tips on how to cheat. I'm sure you have heard this before, but do not cheat on anything! If your teacher finds out, they will give you a F for the assignment, and you will probably lose their respect. In the long run, your grade might suffer for cheating. In addition, don't let your friend copy off you. Many teachers will punish both the cheater and the enabler ( if the enabler knew about it and was allowing them to).

Prioritize: Is it more important to do your math homework or spend time on YouTube? I know that the right answer is not always the most fun one, but things must be sacrificed in order to pull up your grades. If that means that you have to work harder, then go for it still.Try a lot harder in your classes. Often, the hard working students can do just as well or bettern than the smart students that don't work hard.

Have Some Fun: Don't get too stressed over school. While it is very important, the most important thing is for you to learn something, for it will help you later in life. It is not meant to drive you insane. It will help you if you have some rest and relaxation time after a big test or project. Now, this is one that needs a disclaimer: Don't overdo this. You should still keep up with current assignments.

More Tips from our Contributors:
  • The best thing that helps me out is to study more. Also if I am going to be having a test, I make up a study guide and I highlight the important stuff. It really helps out.
  • When your teacher teaches you stuff, try to work out what looks like it would be an exam question and put it into a special notebook for that subject (handwrite it in so you'll remember it better) along with other possible exam questions and read through it once a week briefly as you add to it and you'll know this stuff back to front by exam time.
  • Handwriting notes is the best way I know to remember stuff I'm studying.
  • First of all, don't goof off in class with your friends or other kids. You're bound to miss something important for a test or quiz. Even if your friends are trying to distract you, STAY FOCUSED. It's not cool to goof off in class, just stupid, because you are messing up chances of getting A's and stuff like that. next, TAKE GOOD NOTES. If you aren't sure if you need to know something, write it down anyway because it is better to have more info needed vs. less. Concentrate on lessons being taught instead of looking out the window or something. Also, when you come home from school, have a light snack (fruits, veggies, maybe chips or pretzels, milk, juice or water) then immediately start your homework. no Video Games, tv or computer (unless you need it for hw), maybe after all of your homework is done and stuff because not doing homework is BAD!!! Lastly, don't leave long-term projects till the last minute because that will mess you up. o and also, if you have a question about something or you don't understand something, DON'T BE AFRAID TO ASK- maybe your friend, parent or TEACHER!!! make sure you understand EVERYTHING before an exam so you won't fail.
  • Make sure you understand what is expected of you in each assignment.

For more tips and tricks, see the related questions and the related links. They have some more information and discuss some of the things mentioned above in more detail.

First of all, Listen to your teacher. You can always ask questions too. If you get a failing grade ask for make up work or re-taking a test. Get tutoring.

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2014-04-01 13:49:55
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