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

To me, the most difficult part of studying is not getting distracted. Before I actually begin studying, I create a list of everything I need to accomplish in the order from least to most difficult. After completing each assignment, I check it off of my list, leaving me with a sense of satisfaction, motivating me to finish. When studying, I turn my phone off, put it in the corner of my room, and keep it there for an hour. During that hour, I begin studying. At the top of my list are assignments that require me to memorize terms because to me this requires little critical thinking. In order to memorize, I use flashcards and different colored pens. The different colors allow me to memorize words better because I associate them with color. Writing the words manually on flashcards is also helpful since I have to physically write them myself, thus subconsciously having them on my mind. Moving down my list are subjects that include mathematics. In order to study these subjects, I repeat old practice problems to ensure that I can complete them without any problems. I print out old blank worksheets and do them again because repetition and practice are key. At the bottom of my list with the most difficult assignments, I notice that watching videos online from people who are skilled in that subject can be very helpful. Not only does this allow me to relax a little bit, but many people who make videos are great at explaining complicated topics. After the hour is over, I give myself a 20-minute break to allow myself to relax and have time on my phone. Previously, I did not have my phone the entire time I studied, and I noticed that I got distracted frequently, wondering if I got any important text messages. With my study method, I only have to go without my phone for 1 hour and because I am so focused during this hour, times flies by. After I get some time to relax and be on my phone, I put it away again for an hour and resume my studying until I check off everything on my list.

Elana from Texas
High School Senior
Liberty High School