I believe a good attitude is so Important when it comes to commencing a year culminating in state exams, but also those preparation years before. It’s wise to work consistently through 2nd and 5th year, preparing and summarising your notes so that when your exams come along, you have a good bank of work written in your own language and style. Along any journey, there will be highs and lows and your exam year will specifically be full of excitement and surprises. You will learn so much about yourself. Like any marathon, you need to complete a certain amount of training to be successful in it. Read these two practical tips below and try and take some Inspiration from them for your upcoming homework and revision schedule. It’s only October, so start small and build.
Pay Attention to Detail
You will practice many past exam questions in preparation for your exams, so get used to paying attention to every single word to ensure you don’t misread them. This applies to all your routine class tests also. The mind has been known to play tricks when under stress, so be clear on what the instructions are. I always get my students to circle or underline keywords in past exam questions that we do together. Watch out for questions with two or three parts in them and be careful how you write things down. Layout your paper well and use arrows and notes to signpost your teacher around your answer page as required. Two acronyms that you should stick up on your wall at home are “Read the Full Question” (RTFQ) and “Answer the Full Question” (ATFQ). If you attend to this level of detail in class, Christmas and Mock exams, it will be second nature come the Junior Cycle or Leaving Certificate.
Good Days and Bad Days
As we settle back to school, you are sure to have good days and bad. There will be days that you will not want to study, see notes, or maybe even go to school. It is how you deal with these feelings and situations will be the key to your success. You will learn lessons of perseverance during the year and will need to dig deep, draw on your energy reserves and show determination also. Remember, energy comes from the five e’s; exercise, endorphins, enthusiasm, exuberance and excellence. You will need to take ownership of your work for the first time ever. Try and stay positive during the bad days as things can turn around very quickly in life.
When I look out sometimes at the rain pouring down from grey skies, it seems never ending; it does end though and sun can follow very quickly thereafter. If you don’t feel like doing anything for a day or two, do so, but then reset your goals to be back in top shape afterwards. Conversely, if you are having a great day and feeling good about the world, hit the books hard and go all out to maximise your notes and learning on that day. In general, be focused, determined, committed and persistent. Good luck, Joe.
“Do the preparation work for you. Not your Parents, Friends, or Teachers”
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