I’m back again! (although I should probably be revising…). Basically, I’m typing this at exactly 21:17 in my bedroom, after having gone through my Spanish speaking presentation about 1390589642 times. Yes, I’m one of those people.
I’m pretty sure that I can vouch for most teenagers to agree that having to revise sucks. For a start, you have cover a whole topic, term or even year’s worth of work and make sure that it’s suitably stuffed into your head (along with a whole other bunch of stuff) so that you can spout it all out in a test that everybody will have forgotten about by next month. It seems stupid, annoying and just generally pointless. On the contrary, revision does actually have a purpose. Unfortunately.
Today’s post is going to be a sort of mix-up between a rant and a life hack (because who doesn’t love a bit of daily bitterness?) as I’m also going to give you some of my top revision tips (you don’t get to be an A*** student by flicking through your books!) and well as spilling my anger about having a several tests daily next week (ah, there it goes!).
So first, the rant. Apparently, my school are so disorganised that they cannot make the end of topic/end or term/end of whatever tests not all be on the same week. You may be thinking, ‘yeah that sucks – but get over it!’ – don’t worry, it gets worse. Next week, I have play rehearsals until 7 (which means I don’t get home until at least 7.30-7.45 – yay!) on Monday and Tuesday, then another drama group on Wednesday which finishes at 8.30. Luckily I don’t have any clubs on Thursday, but I’ll only have two tests left by that point. Just to see how painful next week is going to be for me, I’ve detailed my schedule below (please skip if you want to spare yourself feeling immensely sorry for me)
Monday: Spanish Reading (probably the easiest test I’ve got all week – gotta start light, I guess!) + rehearsal until 7
Tuesday: French Writing (probably one of the hardest I’ve got all week – ugh) + rehearsal until 7
Wednesday: Maths (quite easy – we have to memorise 6 different circle theorems) + rehearsal until 8.30
Thursday: Spanish Speaking (normally easy – but hard this time as I have to remember like a whole page of writing and also focus on my pronunciation)
Friday: French Listening (seems deceptively easy – but the last few times it’s been killer)
Physics (this would probably be alright – if I hadn’t left my physics book at school…)
So that’s the plan for next week – although I probably shouldn’t be too bitter, since some of my friends have eight tests next week… Anyway, now that my mini rant is over, I’m going to enlighten you with my top five revision tips.
1. Do revise in advance
It’s something many of us are guilty of on a daily basis – leaving things to the last minute. When it comes to revision, this is definitely not the answer. Never assume that the test will be easy and it will be fine to revise for it the night before – you never know what’s on the paper until you turn it over. Plus, revising the night before means that you’ll be so busy trying to cram it into your head, that you’ll end up not actually understanding what you’re reading.
Normally I have homework on the night I get told about the test, so I obviously don’t have time to revise that night. So what I do, is revise really hard at the weekend, then revise again the night before as a refresher – as well as looking over my notes during the week.
2. Colour is always the way
I’ll admit, I used to be sceptical about using colour when revising – to be honest, I thought it was a waste of time. But provided you don’t go overboard and start colouring the whole page in, writing key words and information in a different colour or highlighting it makes it stand out, and also makes you more likely to remember the information.
For my revision, I only use one colour to make things stand out, and that’s red. Red is a colour that is bold, and immediately catches your attention – plus it’s my favourite colour!
3. Scheduling is key
It might be tempting to just revise when you feel like it (so, never) but the best way to manage your time effectively and beat procrastination is to plan ahead when you’re going to revise, what subject and for how long (covered in my next point).
For example, to be prepared for my tests next week, I’m revising two subjects per night which is pretty manageable for me.
4. Timing is everything
Chances are, you don’t want to be slaving over your biology textbook for four hours straight (but who does?) – which is why you need to time your revision sessions to suit your preferences. It needs to be long enough so that you can actually get things done (eg. 10 minutes is probably too short if you need to get a lot of stuff done) but not too long that you get bored and start to lose concentration (let’s throwback to the time I revised the Middle Ages for history in Year Seven for four hours straight #noragrets).
Because I have a reasonably long attention span (most of the time) I usually revise for 30 minutes to an hour, depending on the subject, and the amount I have to revise. But maybe if you have more time in the evening than the morning – do small chunks in the morning, and the bigger parts in the evening. Make sure that your timing is suited to you, and it will be easier to find time to revise.
5. Read around the topic
This one is not only a revision tip, but also a life tip (wink wink). My mum is always telling me this (much to my annoyance), but it’s actually true. My school gives a list of the different things that you learn and that will be on the test at the start of each topic – but they still put in extra things. Have you ever memorised things from your book word for word – and then gotten to the test and realised that most of the questions are not asking you to state a memorised statement?
Revision is not only about refreshing your memory, but also about developing an understanding of the topic, which will inevitably help you to ace your test.
So this is the end of my revision post – I hope you enjoyed! Comment below if these tips helped you, and good luck if you have upcoming tests!