Breath, Relax, Concentrate
Ring!! The time has come for three days of extreme concentration, stress, and memorization. On these days everyone wears comfy clothes and bring their triple coffee latte to help them stay up. Mornings are full of protein packed breakfasts like cheesy eggs with a crunchy buttery toast, and a blueberry muffin and nights are full of late night readings and sips on dark coffee. These days are called … FINALS!
As each high school student prepares for semester finals, remember to not wait until the last minute to get your studying on the go. Make sure you eat a mighty breakfast that will fill your belly with warmth while taking the tests. However, most importantly remember to get enough sleep each night before a final because it is the key to unlock your brain for all the information you have saturated in your head.
Some tips that I found helpful when finals week approached were:
1. First don’t squeeze four month’s of learning into your brain in less than a day.
For most of us, if you cram before your final the outcome will be that your brain will only remember the last thing you studied and your mind will go blank when the tests comes. In fact, by you cramming your stress levels go up and you have short panic attacks of never finishing reviewing all the notes before the day of the final. Additionally, if you begin to cram you eventually begin to spot study. This type of studying is guessing what questions will appear on the exam. When we do this we tend to over look the big picture and leave out the tiny bits and pieces of what the teacher emphasized us to learn.
2. Clear you space of any distractions and organize your notes neatly.
This to me is very important because I can’t study for a long period of time unless my area is clean and I can easily refer to any of my notes or homework packets for more help. Remember to study in a quiet place where no distractions can prevent you from studying at peace. For most of us this can be very hard, because we want to check the social media with news on how the rest of our fellow classmates are studying and coping with stress to understand information before the final, but the best way to stop this is to give all your devices to your parents. I know this is cheesy, but if you can’t live without your device then simply hand it over to your parents because you know that you won’t get the phone back unless you have finished studying. You can also leave your phone in the car if you study at home or go the library because you know if you want to just check your Instagram or twitter you will have to walk out the door, open your car door, and take your phone. For some this is not a problem because they can just leave their phone outside the living room and not be tempted to check it for even a minute.
3. Be a teacher for a day.
I know this may sound crazy, but studies have shown that reading out loud can improve your knowledge of remember information better than just reading through piles of notes and formulas. This has certainly helped me fully understand information and remember with ease whenever I encounter a similar question or problem. Although this is beneficial for retention, it can be very difficult when you get to college because no one wants to hear roommates repeat information out loud, but you can make it easier if you study with a group of two people and each one of you guys teachers something important.
4. Study with a group a week before finals start.
Although working in a group can cause distractions and road bumps, it can also be helpful. For instance, if you don’t understand a math formula involving the quadratic function or can’t figure out what literary device was used for a paragraph in a novel then you can learn how the rest of your classmates approached the situation. You can also gain knowledge by gathering all the information you have learned from your classmates and use it for your own use.
5. Let your brain breath.
After much studying one thing that has helped me feel relaxed and retain more information is running for thirty minutes either before or after. It allows my mind to be stress free and open to more information because it helps improve blood circulation to the brain, which can enhance concentration. In fact it also increases oxygen intake so that your are more alert about catching the little things that will make a huge impact in your studying. If you don’t feel like running for more than thirty minutes than try to run for less or simply step outside and walk for a little because it can help your brain breath after all the dense information you have stuffed your brain with.
6. Finally reward yourself.
Before all your exams approach be sure to reward yourself after all the stress you have put your brain into. For me personally, I come up with food as a reward after my finals. I have a tradition of going out to Yogurt Passion with my family and tasting a gush of sweet flavors as my reward. Make sure to think of a reward that you love and is realistic for you to achieve and enjoy.
These are just a few tips that have helped me during my stressful finals week at school ad I hope that they will help you guys when taking your exams. Remember that when you receive your scantron for your test just take a deep breath and place your legs firmly on the ground so that you aren’t as nervous and anxious to forget about all the information you have placed in your brain. Above all remember that when you face a problem that you don’t understand or remember don’t panic during the test because the odds are that many people in the class don’t understand it as well. We will be just like Frankenstein in the novel when he stays in his little room for two years trying to build his ultimate creation. In fact, just like he shuts his life off by having no contact with his family such as Elizabeth, his father, and Henry Carvel, we should step aside from our phones and the internet in order to be focused on studying and not procrastinating.
Quote: Good luck on your final exams and remember to breath and relax! (: