April is Stress awareness month, and we are soon approaching the GCSE exam period, which can be a source of stress for many students. So, we wanted to give you some study tips to make the revision less stressful and instead make studying easy and fun. Yes, we said fun!
One thing to note is that everyone learns differently. So, a study method that works for one person may not work for another. This might be why you find revision boring – that method doesn’t work for you! For instance, if you are a visual learner, mind maps might be a better revision method than just reading over your notes. So, it’s important to experiment with different revision methods to find what works best for you.
Here are some different revision methods to try:
Create amusing stories to remember keywords and facts. Invent a story that features each thing on your list about a fact you need to remember and ensure they are in the correct order. Think of image associations and ways to make it entertaining or strange to make it easier to remember.
Make it musical
Think about the number of songs you can remember the lyrics to or jingles you can remember from adverts. Try to create music mnemonics such as poems, jingles and songs to help you remember your facts. One song I’m sure you know from your youth is the ‘ABC song’ (I bet you are singing now in your head!) We are not saying you need to produce your own music tracks. Instead, you could use existing music but alter the lyrics to now be about your topic of study.
This is a simple tool to remember key facts or even improve your spelling. Many people will remember ‘Never East Shredded Wheat’ from primary school days and that shows how powerful they are.
Acronyms can be used to remember a string of words which make up the name of something. Example: BOGOF (Buy One Get One Free). This is a great way to remember facts through a word association technique.
Roman Room System/Journey/Peg/Loci System
This is a powerful memory association tool that is effective by placing associations in various locations in a room or on a journey. By consistently repeating the journey, it will lodge the facts into your mind.
Mind maps are great for creating colourful visual associations to help to organise and remember information. They are diagrams that allow you to organise and connect different ideas and concepts with keywords, text and doodles.
Flashcards can be a great tool for memorizing information. You can create flashcards for different topics or concepts and review them regularly. They are a quick and easy way to test yourself, and you can use colour associations to help with memorisation.
Taking practice tests can help you identify areas where you need to focus your revision. You can also get a feel for the types of questions that may be on the exam.
Active recall is a method of reviewing information by testing yourself on what you’ve learned. This can be done by writing out notes, speaking out loud, or creating quizzes for yourself.
Teaching someone else the material you need to know can be a powerful way to solidify your understanding. You can try explaining concepts to a friend or family member or even record yourself teaching the material.
Studying and preparing for an exam can be daunting, especially if you’re unsure where to start. However, with the right mindset and approach, you can be well-prepared and confident when taking your exam. Revision isn’t all you need to do to be prepared for an exam. Remember to start early, know what to expect, create a study schedule, use active learning techniques, practice regularly, get plenty of rest, avoid cramming, and seek help when needed.
If you would like any help with studying, look at our book Smarten your study. This book shares tools and techniques that help make the boring stuff fun and the hard stuff easier. It’s time to turn the ‘I can’t’ into ‘I can’!
With proven memory techniques, Smarten Your Study will help to create positive study habits. By having a little more fun, you will ultimately build up resilience, relieve stress and lead on a path to success.
Good luck with your exam!
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