Write an essay where you tell us what test preparation practices work best for you and why.

Everyone has felt it - the unavoidable dread and terror when a test in a tough subject (ap calculus, anyone?) is approaching. Palms get sweaty, heart race increases. The nerves that accompany a big test can be distracting enough to hurt student performance. Through my years of experience with education the best lesson I’ve learned to help ease nerves is that preparation is key. Particularly, the best methods for test preparation is repetition in layman’s terms.
When preparing for a test, proper time management is key. With this comes the chance to repeat, repeat, repeat! The most effective method is flashcards. From an equation for math, a date for history or a rhetorical device for english, flashcards can be a savior to students of any subject. My strategy for flashcards helps drill information into my head that I can easily reference on a test. As I study the cards, I separate them into piles based on my confidence. This gives me the chance for self reflection so I can move forward knowing where I’m weakest. Not only do I get repetition from reading the information and saying it outloud, but the very act of making flashcards is an extra step that helps understanding. However, it’s important to remember that being prepared for a test comes with dedicated study time each night, not a three hour session the day before where stress levels are exponentially higher.
Remembering the information is only half the battle. A true scholar not only knows the information, but knows how to apply it. The best way to do this is to put the desired information into layman’s terms (sometimes with sarcastic flair to make studying more exciting). When making flashcards, I like to simplify explanations so I can best understand. Rather than describing the effects of a great battle on society, I tell it to myself like a story so it’s easier to follow and understand.
With the willingness to put in work little by little, over and over again, any student can find success in any subject.

Kerry from Washington
High School Senior
Heritage High School