Helpful Tips for Improving Your Grades During High School

Whether you're a freshman or a senior, it's never too late to improve your grades. Although it may seem impossible at times, if you care enough to try, you can succeed. To help you get started, here are several actionable tips to help you start working towards your goal: 


Don't Breeze Over Something That Doesn't Make Sense:

 Parents often assume that students' grades aren't straight As because they're not trying hard enough. While that can be the case, there are often other factors at play. One of the most common is that when a student hits a rough patch, they simply skip it and move on. Although it may not seem like a big deal at the time, those gaps can cause problems down the line. Gaps can be especially dangerous in subjects like math that continue to build on previous knowledge. If this situation sounds all too familiar, the key to fixing it is sticking with problems you encounter until you fully understand them. Whether that requires asking your teacher for help or doing extra research online, the hard work you put in upfront will continue to pay off over time. 


Drop Extra curricular That Are Just Filler

A common myth about extracurricular activities in high school is the more you can do, the better. Students across the country are told that college admission officers want to see long lists of activities. In reality, admissions departments want to see students who have really committed to one or two activities and accomplished something that makes them stand out. If you always feel short on study time because you have nearly a dozen activities to juggle, don't be afraid to drop those that you aren't actually passionate about. 


Take Notes in a Way That Works for You

There are dozens of different books and systems that claim to provide the perfect way to take notes. While those resources can be helpful, there's no such thing as one perfect strategy. What's important is to find a method that works for you. By experimenting with different approaches, you'll be able to figure out what works best. And as you'll likely discover, what works amazingly well in one class may not be ideal for another. 
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Outline, Research, Draft and Edit:

 In most of your classes, you likely have papers and reports that account for a significant portion of your overall grade. Since moving from a C to a B or B to an A on one paper can bump up your final grade, don't just sit down and try to blast out a paper. Instead, start with an outline, fill in the necessary research and write a first draft. You can then polish the rough draft into your full paper. Prior to turning it in, give it one full edit, as well as a final proofreading. Although that may sound like a lot, it's easier than you expect and will definitely improve the grade you receive.
Bob Smuckateli is a blogger who writes about different colleges in Chicago IL and around the United States.
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