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How to ace every class (even gym!) starting now

 
Wanna boost your scores sky-high this year? Yeah, we thought so. Wow Mom and Dad (and impress Teach, too), with the new-and-improved Y-O-U. Top of the class? Naturally. Here’s how to do it.

 

 

Get the 411

First off, you gotta know what the teacher is lookin’ for in an A+ student. So pay attention when they’re goin’ over the syllabus. Do they like a lot of class participation? Or is chewing gum one of their pet peeves? We’re not sayin’ you gotta be a teacher’s pet, but if you know what you should be shootin’ for, it’s whole lot easier to snag that A.

Extra credit: Chat up an upperclassmen who’s had this teacher before. Find out what makes her tick and what kind of behavior she rewards with bonus points.

 

Homework—it’s, um, not optional

Worst phrase ever, we know. But the truth is that homework really does help you learn the material, so if you’re doing it faithfully from day one, there’ll be a lot fewer cramming sessions before tests. You’ll save yourself stress, and learning things slowly over time will be a lot more effective than trying to shove everything into your brain the night of a test.
Extra credit: Gonna be out for a day? If you know in advance, get your HW in before you hit the road. 

 

Bare necessities? Bah!

These may have worked for the animals in The Jungle Book, but they don’t really cut it in school. Handing in stuff that barely makes the grade will leave your report card hangin’ by a thread, and that is not how ya wanna start out the year. So whether you’ve got a project, a paper or a physical fitness test in gym, you need to try your very best. Even if you aren’t the best, teachers will notice if you’re really putting in effort, and they’ll reward you for it.

Extra credit: Ask for help before you start to struggle. Can't figure out a word problem in geometry? Approach your teacher after class, when she isn't rushing around, and ask her if you could maybe meet up after school for ten minutes to go over your trouble spots.
 

Plan perfect

Even if you’re not a planner, ya need to get one because if you forget to do an assignment, you’re gonna lose precious points. From get-go, start writing down your homework, your projects and oh yeah, your social life. That way, you know when you’ll have time to get the work done, and hopefully, you won’t end up leaving it ‘til the last minute.

Extra credit: Sometimes, extenuating circumstances get the best of even the brightest students. If you know you're going to have trouble completing a certain assignment on time, explain the issue to Teach ahead of time, just to give her a head's up. And even if you get that coveted extension, do your best to turn in your work on time.
 

Get your study on

You may think you don’t need to study because you already know all the info and your teacher is totally not strict. Well, think again, sistah. You should always study at least a little bit for every test because ya never know when your teach is gonna throw a curveball and leave your grade in the dust. Sometimes, the “easiest” teachers are actually the hardest because they don’t demand much in class but then expect you to know all the facts for the tests. So be safe, and study bit by bit – you’ll thank yourself later.

Extra credit: Do yourself a favor and find out what's on the test--and what format you can expect--before you hit the books. This will help ya zero in on what you really need to brush up on rather than wasting time.
 
What are your foolproof straight-A strategies?
 
 

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BY CARRIE RUPPERT ON 7/25/2012 12:00:00 AM

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