Exam, SAC & Test Preparation Tips

3 Minute Read
Written By: Alek Stokes

For this blog, I thought I would write up some of my favourite Exam and SAC preparation tips for VCE Students.

Not in VCE? don’t stress, You’ll still get something out of it for yourself or your child! These tips can be applied to all different year levels with homework or upcoming tests.

Start Early

How often have you planned to start your study early but end up leaving it to the very last minute? Also known as cramming!

It goes without saying that you should avoid leaving your study to the last minute. This strategy may not work for all students but give it a go anyway. Grab a pen and piece of paper and draw yourself a timetable. Write out the subject and what is upcoming for it, whether it be a SAC or an Exam. From there, plan backwards and give yourself plenty of time to commence study for this upcoming Exam or SAC.

The trick is to find the balance between all of your subjects. Once you do this, you’ll stop being stressed out by scheduling.

Explain your answers and topics to those around you

Whilst you may want to be locked away from your family when you are studying, you can use them to your advantage. Explain questions and answers to them. This will allow you to say your answers aloud and you will be able to highlight areas you need to work on in a different way.

Take a break

Studying for hours on hours will lead to saturation. You will end up at the point where you can no longer focus on anything. It’s easy to feel overwhelmed by anxiety if you don’t know how to manage your stress. Instead of building up the stress and pressure that leads to anxiety, take regular breaks. Find the time frame that works for you. Some people take a 10-minute break every hour, it’s completely up to you.

I personally found a ratio of 20 minutes work, 5 minutes rest to be more beneficial to myself.

Clear the study space

This point, in particular, I find to be the most important. Making sure your study space is well organised is of the utmost importance. There should be as minimal distractions as possible. Make sure you have the right amount of light, have a comfy chair and have enough room to spread everything out without it being cluttered. Some people need music, some people need silence, do what works for you.

You can read a different perspective on space and focus in Simons previous blog post by clicking here

Use the practice Exams and practice SAC’s

I know you will probably hear this from your teachers a lot, BUT this point is overlooked by everyone. Use past exams and go through them. As you get better, sit them in test conditions. It can also be beneficial to get someone else to mark the results for you.

It can also pay off to time yourself to see if you are using your time wisely or not.

Doing this will also allow yourself to become familiar with the format for the SAC or Exam.

Bring some brain snacks!

You will need to eat every now and again during your study time. When choosing your snacks, try and select options to will keep your energy and focus up. Nutritious foods like nuts, blueberries or yoghurt will help keep your brain focused and active.

This tip also applies to the exam. Whilst you can’t eat in the exam, make sure you have a healthy and nourishing meal before your exam.

Study Groups

Get together with some classmates and study together. Bounce your thoughts and answers off each other and use the group to expand on your knowledge and answers. The group may be able to answers questions you don’t know and you may be able to answers questions for them.

The trick to selecting an effective group is to pick people who want to study, not people that will distract you for hours.

Study groups should also take breaks together to relax and allow some ‘down time’.

In Summary, the bottom line for effective study is structure and organisation. Allow yourself time between tests, SACS & Exams to study to content. Give yourself the best possible chance of success. Keep in mind that you need to also look after yourself for maximum efficiency.

That’s all for this blog! Don’t forget to join our Facebook Group for more tips, tricks and suggestions on ALL things education!

We provide resources on Music, Maths, English, and more!

Link here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/201222494635954

See you there!

Until then, keep learning, keep growing and keep asking questions

3 Tips to set your child up for maximum success this year

3 Minute Read
Written by Simon Lewicki

Today I am going to show you three simple ways to set your child up for success this year. 3 simple, yet powerful ways. These will work regardless of year level. These 3 methods were taken from documenting the at-home practices of my top-performing students. They helped them stand out and achieve great results. All without impacting on their personal interests! 

Let’s dive in! 

Our first tip is about the swamp. Also known as, your child’s room. 

I am not going to waste your time referring to all the studies that show the environment you work in matters. We all know that. I am going to explain what I have seen work and what they had in their environment.

Let’s go! 

Environment plays a critical role in everyone’s life, whether they are 75 or 10. In saying that, getting this right for your child is more important. It will make them more productive and take some pressure off of you. Win, win! 

What makes a good environment? 

A few things… 

First off, 

FUNCTIONALITY 

Everything they need is within reach. This includes a space for their iPad (such as a stand), pencils, pens, notebooks, and space to spread out worksheets. If the workspace becomes frustrating, your child will become distracted and agitated. This will limit their output. 

Ensure they have a big enough desk and that there is space for them to be productive. During assignment periods, they will need to spread work out across the desk, prepare in advance and make sure they have enough space. We don’t want them using the kitchen table every time there is an assignment. 

DISTRACTIONS 

Next and this is the big one, especially in the earli- oh look! A squirrel! 

Yup, distractions! Need to limit these as much as possible! 

NO squirrels allowed! None! 

This will vary from child to child, you’ll know what to remove to ensure their success. I’m not saying take it all outside and launch it over the neighbours fence. This tip is more about limiting access and removing clutter from your child’s environment. 

Distractions aren’t always devices, it could be a mini basketball hoop on the door. Even then, what is distracting to one child, helps another focus. Discretion needed. 

For example: 

I had two very capable students, both had limited access to their iPads each night. This created a good habit of getting their work done earlier in the night and playing later in the night. They consistently got work done early and to a good standard. Homework never impacted their sporting commitments, because it was always done early and before it was due. This works, try it out. 

CONSISTENCY 

Our next and last tip for the environment side of things. Consistency. 

ConsistencY of environment, that is. 

Yes, that ‘Y’ was an ironic joke, good eye! 

Nice and simple this one, but I’ll show you what worked for my best students. 

Make your child’s environment bamboo! 

That’s right, we are now looking at bamboo. 

Why? 

Bamboo is both amazingly strong AND flexible. 

That’s what we need. The last two years have been the exact opposite for your child. Let’s future-proof their workspace this year. 

Here’s how: 

– Make sure the workspace is in the same spot. Wherever you choose, don’t change it. If they have a desk in their room, great. 

Don’t have your child sit at the table one night and then outside the next. Of course, at times, it’s okay to have them sit where you can see them. What we don’t want is too much change. 

– Ensure the workspace can work for both online learning and physical. 

Here’s hoping we never go back to online learning but prepare now and your child won’t be interrupted. 

This is very simple to do. Ensure there is space for an iPad and a workbook at their dedicated space. As a plus, this could help watch educational videos while studying too! 

That is all for today! Next time we’ll dive deeper into other areas of consistency. Including, scheduling and routine. We’ll take a look into the power of scheduling and show you a method taught by a serial entrepreneur. They used this method to make themselves a fortune, your child can use it to achieve ultimate success at school and beyond! 

If you would like more tips, tricks, and suggestions on ALL things education. Please consider joining our FREE Meta (Facebook) group. We provide resources on Music, Maths, English, and more! 

Link here: https://www.facebook.com/groups/201222494635954 

See you there! 

Until then, keep learning, keep growing and keep asking questions!

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