5 Reasons Prepping For School Saves you Time

Prepping For Class Saves Time. A little investment  goes a long way in saving you time in school.

Prepping for school saves you time studyingPrime your mind to store and retain information.   Here are five reasons prepping for class makes learning in school a whole lot easier and saves you tons of time.

1.    Big Picture Overview primes memory.  Our memory works by associating new ideas with old ones.  When students read the assignment for school, and review the notes from last class, it paves the way for new information to be connected with this big picture concept that has just been studied. It gives the students mind an overall picture of what the main themes of the class will be.  Our brains naturally store and recall information more effectively when students start with a big picture concept of the key ideas, and then fill in with specific examples and applications used in school.

2.   You’ll recognize and understand key terms more readily.  Remember, understanding key terms, and their interconnection with key concepts is the basis for students taking brief, memorable notes in school. For example, say your Psychology class is studying Freud.  Students need to know about the ego, superego, and the id, and when Freud says they develop.  In reviewing ahead of time for class, the students mind has been  primed  to pick up on the teacher’s mentioning any of these key terms.  Students will be able to listen more carefully during class, and to take more meaningful notes on how these three concepts influence each other and psychological development.

3.   It allows note taking shorthand. Reading ahead allows students to check off directly in their book when the teacher covers something that is in there from the class lecture.  Those students unprepared will be writing like mad; whereas students who have read ahead will simply be putting a symbol beside anything the teacher mentions from the book.  I recommend the letter “c” with a circle around it, so the students can quickly notice that this is information covered in class.  Anything mentioned both in the book and in the class lecture is worth making a special note of.

4.  It primes active listening.  Finally, coming prepared sets students up for active listening in the class.  The golden nuggets that students want in your notes are contained within the key words and key concepts in 10% of the lecture. Let me cover the idea of key words and concepts in more depth here. Say you just saw a great movie and you want to tell some friends about it.  How much do you tell them?  Certainly, not all the dialogue, in fact, you probably wouldn’t mention the dialogue at all unless it contained a funny joke. Nope, you’d stick with the synopsis, just the highlights.  You would condense a two-hour show into a five-minute description. The review you would give the movie contains the essence of the key words.  That’s exactly what you’ll want to write down when you’re taking notes during the class lecture, the main ideas, not every word.  Imagine that you’re going to tell a fellow classmate who had to miss class what the lecture was about.  Those ideas you’d tell her are what you want in your notes.

5.  Prep makes taking notes a lot easier. Perhaps the best way to take notes in school is a process of three-dimensional, one-page note taking, sometimes called brain webs or mind maps.  In this process, the central idea is placed in the middle, and the main themes radiate outward with subcategories attached to their respective themes. When students have looked at the material before class, they have a much better idea of how the key points interconnect.  This helps students to write your notes in a way that shows you how the concepts relate to each other. _________________________________________________________________

College Success Speaker, Crystal Jonas- Bio Link

Hi, I’m Crystal Jonas, As a former academic advisor and assistant professor at the United States Air Force Academy, I know what it takes to make college students more successful, enjoy school whole lot more. Ask about speaking or coaching for your students or faculty. Call me at 719- 291-0366.

What Exaordinary College Students Do to Manage Their Time

 When you do what successful college students do, you get what successful college students get!

Time Management for StudentsSuccessful students have a clear idea about how they will manage their time.

I know, sometimes you just want to go with the flow and not be held to a tight schedule. That’s completely understandable. Just make sure that most of the time, you have a clear focus and direction so you know what you will have accomplished by the end of your day.

How much of the time should you schedule? 

Try 80% and see how much you get done.  If you’re uncomfortable getting that much done, scale back a bit. I’m thinking you’ll like the results.

Successful students manage expectations of themselves. They also manage the expectations others have of them.

Let’s say that you have a free Saturday.  How do you manage your time? You don’t have to work, you don’t have study group, and you’ve decided this is a great time to catch up on those 500 pages of reading for your History class.

Before you set your alarm for 6 AM and plan to read until 9 PM , do yourself a favor and set challenging, yet reasonable goals for yourself.  If you set the bar too high, you will get discouraged and give up after about, oh, three paragraphs. This is just what successful college students do.

And while you’re at it, let others know what you can do.  If your study group assigns you an entire chapter to report on in the next 24 hours, let them know if you will be glad to take the first half of the chapter, but you are booked up past that.

Ok, they won’t love it, but it’s better than pretending you can get through all of that and discouraging yourself and your group.


College Success Speaker, Crystal Jonas- Bio Link

Hi, I’m Crystal Jonas,

As a former academic advisor and assistant professor at the United States Air Force Academy, I know what it takes to make college students more successful with time management and enjoy school whole lot more.

Ask about speaking or mentoring for your students or faculty. Call me at 719- 291-0366.

Students Who Lead with Positive Attitudes Get Results

Focus on the Positive and Remember That Attitude is Important, Especially for the New Students on Campus

having a positive attitude helps your resultsJennifer, a junior who will next year be the student in charge of Welcome Week for her college’s incoming freshmen, said that the “positive factor” is the most important element that makes new students feel comfortable and happy they chose their school. “Every student on the Welcome Week committee was first chosen for their positive attitude. It makes a huge difference in giving the new students a positive first impression of the school.”

As you lead your team, keep that positive attitude whether it only meets for a few months a year, or for the better part of the entire year.  Remember, most of the time, these students are volunteers, and they have tons of responsibilities outside of this group, you must lead in order to keep their attitude positive as well!

Catch people in the act of being good, smart, funny, helpful, selfless, any value you’d like to reinforce.  Praise them openly and be specific about what they did and how that helps to further the mission of the group.

When you are praising people, especially the new students, use their names, look them in the eye, and be sincere.  It’s amazing how you will find students going out of their way to do well when they know they are appreciated.

School can be tough and many people put in a lot of effort with very little reward or recognition. Frequent, prompt, and honest praise will go a long way in helping students stay on track when it seems that no one is noticing their contributions.

Stay focused on the all the great unique talents your people bring to the group and they will continue to live up to your high expectations.