Look at your list, find the first letter of each of the items in the list, and write these first letters horizontally on a piece of paper to see if they make a word. If they do make a word then you have created a mnemonic device to remember the items of the list. If you can remember the word, you will have a good chance of remembering the items.
Step 2: Insert a Letter or Letters.
Sometimes the first letter of each of the items in the list does not form a word. If this is the case, you might have to insert a letter or letters to make it easier to remember. It is best to insert just one or two letters, or you may forget which of the letters represent items in your list.
Step 3: Rearrange the Letters.
Sometimes it does not work to insert a letter or letters to create a good mnemonic device. If this is the case, then you might have to rearrange the letters until you come up with a word that you can remember; however, if the items are placed in a specific order, then they cannot be rearranged.
Step 4: Shape a Sentence.
This means you make a sentence by using the first letter of each word in the list as the first letter of each of the words in a sentence. You can make a whole sentence, a phrase, or a part of a sentence. The best tactic to use would be to make the sentence about the topic of the that is being memorized.
Step 5: Try Combinations.
If the first four steps did not work individually, then you can try to use them in combination. For example, you might find that you need to rearrange the letters and insert a letter to get a word, rearrange the letters before you can make a good sentence, or you might insert a small word in your sentence like an 'and' to make it work.
5 Steps for Making and Memorizing Lists - "LISTS"
Step 1: Look for Clues.
(1) Look for word clues. The word clue will form the title or heading for a list, and the points of information which follow them would form the items in the list. (2) Look for other clues for lists for which you can listen and/or watch. (3) Look for important clues. Usually, if the information was mentioned in class and is covered in the chapter, it is important information to know. (4) Once you have found a clue and have decided that the list is important, you need to decide what the heading of your list will be. You will need to follow these five rules: the heading must summarize; must be separated from the list items; must be short; must be accurate; and must be limiting. (5) Now you can summarize your heading. Write it down on a piece of scrap paper so you can see it and evaluate it easily.
Step 2: Investigate the Items.
(1) You need to find related items by looking in the nearby vicinity of your heading clue and locating each item that can be subsumed under the heading of your list. Write each item under the heading on your scrap paper. (2) Most items should be one or two words long so that they will be easy to remember. (3) Make sure that when you put an item into your own words to shorten it you do not change its meaning or leave out an important part. (4) All items should contain information that you need to know. (5) The item chosen must not be listed more than once. (6) Each item must be parallel to the other items in the list. (7) In order to prepare a list for memorization purposes, as a general rule, it should be no more than about seven items long. (8) Investigate the items in your list to make sure you fulfill the requirements for list items.
Step 3: Select a Mnemonic Device Using "FIRST".
Continue to use your piece of scrap paper, and apply the 'FIRST' steps to your list to get a mnemonic word or sentence.
Step 4: Transfer the Information to a Card.
Write the heading of your list in the center of one side of a 3" x 5" card. Then turn your card over and write your mnemonic device in the upper left hand corner. In the center of the card write your list items.
Step 5: Self Test.
This is your memorization step. To memorize your list, you will test your own knowledge of the list until you are certain that you know it well.
ACROSTICS - An acrostic is a sequence of letters that helps you remember a poem or other text
Loci - Memorizing using the method of loci, a memory walk, or memory palace for up to twenty items Select any location that you have spent a lot of time in and know well. Good for kinesthetic learners! Imagine yourself walking through the location, selecting clearly defined places--the door, sofa, refrigerator, shelf, etc. Imagine yourself putting objects that you need to remember into each of these places by walking through this location in a direct path.
Chaining - Create a story where each word or idea you have to remember cues the next idea you need to recall.
It's the night before... what now
It’s the Night Before…
Assess your situation
◦ How much work do you have?
◦ Can you finish it all in one night?
◦ Do you have other work that needs to get done?
◦ Should you take a late grade?
◦ IT’S ONLY 3% OF YOUR GRADE!
THAT’S ABOUT 0.5% OVERALL
This is a little more complicated. Obviously you can’t
take a late grade…
● How much time do you have?
vs. How much time do you need?
● How much sleep do you need to feel rested? When will you
stop and call it a night?
●Get to know your limits
● When is your test? First thing? Later in the day?
● Group your notes and readings
● Define key terms and ideas and let
the rest go
● Think about possible test questions
● Use flashcards or online websites
● Be able to picture your outline in your head
Do you have Smart Friends?
If so, use them.
If not, make them quickly!
They will most likely already be done
studying and can help you get
everything in order.
The Study Guide
1. Find out exactly what’s on the test
a. Usually Canvas or your teacher will tell you what it’s
b. If there is not a detailed outline, phone a smart friend
c. Sometimes, like in 11th Grade US History, there isn’t
a term list. You have to use the syllabus
The Study Guide
2. Figure out what you know and what you don’t
a. This doesn’t mean you need to have a concept down,
just be familiar with it. You can come back to it if you
b. Of the topics you don’t know, which will be tested
heavily? Which will only appear once? Which do you
have time to worry about?
The Study Guide
3. Plan out exactly how much time you are going to
devote to each topic.
a. Don’t stay on a specific topic too long. Move on
and come back if you have time.
b. Do you have other subjects to worry about?
If you really suck at making study guides, or just want
to ignore what I just said (not recommended), ask an
organized friend for theirs
Make sure they’re someone
who would probably get an A.
Use the Internet!
1. Make sure websites at least seem credible
2. For English, use Sparknotes (or something similar)
3. For Math, use Paul’s Online Notes
4. Language and Science websites vary
5. Iffy for History
● Terms are usually highlighted in the book
● Use Chapter Summaries
These will save you time!
Things stressed in class WILL REAPPEAR
● Important Terms
● Know how your teacher writes their tests
● Again, have a smart friend explain it to you
● Email your teacher
● Ask to meet with your teacher before school
○ if your teacher cannot meet,
ASK ANOTHER TEACHER!
Studying Strategies: The Importance of Sleep
● Our brains are at their best when they are rested
● Study a few minutes right before bed; DON’T
STUDY IN BED
Studying Strategies: Memory
● Mnemonic Strategies & Acronyms (PEMDAS)
● Acrostic (Every Good Boy Does Fine)
● Method of Loci (Visual)
● Image-Name Technique (Invent a story)
● Chaining & Phrases
● MAKE IT MATTER TO YOU
● Move as you study
● Write notes by hand
● Eat good foods
● Regular 5 minute breaks
● Put your phone away
● Get some exercise
● Wake up on time or a bit early. Not TOO early
● Eat Breakfast
● Think about after the test. How will you celebrate?
● Think POSITIVE!
● Information on quizzes and tests WILL reappear,
sometimes more than once
● As soon as possible, go over everything again and make sure you
understand ALL of it.
● Once you get the test back, review it too.
When it comes time for larger tests or exams, you won’t be cramming 5
months of material you don’t understand. If you do this for every unit,
you won’t ever have to cram because you planned ahead. How nice
would that be?