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

Since 9th grade, I lived in fear of physics class. Every Thursday, I’d hear juniors crying in the hallways because of their latest “Terrific Thursday” quiz. Physics was notoriously the hardest class at my school, and it wasn’t uncommon to fail its exams.
On the first days of physics in 11th grade, I quickly realized the previous classes weren’t being dramatic. At least while settling into the class, it was difficult to understand the concepts and get points on quizzes. Thankfully I was doing well in the first few months, but I knew I needed to step up my game before the class became more complicated.
Around December we started learning about projectile motion and of course, it was challenging to grasp. At that point my confidence in myself in physics was falling. But one December night, while listening to Christmas music and attempting my physics homework, an unconventional solution popped into my head. Why not write a Christmas song about physics? Music was very prominent in my childhood: I sang, danced, played the piano and constantly watched Schoolhouse Rock and Little Einsteins. I figured learning through music should come naturally to me, right?
So last Christmas, I wrote a parody of Last Christmas on my ukulele about projectile motion. Believe it or not, when assessments on projectile motion came around, they felt like a breeze as I cheerfully hummed my song to myself.
Whenever I found any physics information hard to understand, I’d run to an instrument and rewrite whatever song was stuck in my head with lyrics that explained the topic. Composing my own lyrics with instruments made physics concepts click in my head and made the class surprisingly enjoyable.
Now I can say physics is one of my favorite classes despite the anxiety I felt leading up to it. I loved the challenge of its problems and how I could make its material fall into place with a simple song. I hope to continue studying physics and utilize music to comprehend any topic I may be presented with.

Liezl from New Jersey
High School Senior
Notre Dame School