There’s no denying it; if you want to get good grades, you have to hit the books. But, there are a few ways to make your in-school learning and studying even more effective, and many of them are more relaxing than you would expect! Try hitting the marks on the four strategies below to set yourself up for success.
When homework assignments pile up and midterm exams are around the corner, it might be tempting to stay up late to log some extra study time. But too many of those late nights might be doing you more harm than good. During sleep, your brain has a time to rest and rewire. Across all ages, a consistent lack of sleep can result in poor performance, at school or at work. Lack of sleep decreases one’s ability to control impulses, manage emotions, concentrate, and retain new information. Overtime, a lack of sleep can even result in a greater risk of depression. According the the National Sleep Foundation, school age children need between nine and eleven hours of sleep every night, teanagers need nine to ten, and adults need seven to nine. Try to consistently get the amount of sleep recommended for your age group to set yourself up for success in school.
Research shows that even brief meditation before work or school can help improve focus and information retention. Meditation is simply sitting quietly to focus on your breath with no distractions. Carving our 5 minutes in the morning before school to sit distraction free might be just the clarity boost you need to start the school day off on the right foot.
Having a breakfast full of fiber, healthy fats, protein, and nutrients helps fuel your brain for learning throughout the day. Research shows that breakfast eaters are more alert, focused, and have better performance on on-task behavior in the classroom. Having a healthy breakfast in the morning can also help keep you full until lunch, preventing the distraction of hunger pangs during your morning classes.
There is a growing body of evidence to support that exercise can improve academic performance. Exercising before school can increase focus and reduce ADHD symptoms, while exercising after school can help improve cognitive function. Taking physical activity breaks throughout the day can improve classroom performance. The takeaway? There’s no “right” time to do it! If possible, ride your bike or walk to school, participate in an after school activity, or take quick active breaks throughout the day.
You don’t have to be a student to benefit from these four strategies. Sleep, meditation, a healthy breakfast, and daily exercise can also help you be more productive and focused in your day-to-day life. Which one of these four strategies will you try? Let us know in the comments below!