Active, Active, Active Study. This is your education, no one else’s, grab hold of it now!
Chemistry can be a challenging course for many of you. In some cases it is the first time you are truly asked to attend very closely to such a large amount of information in such great detail. This may require you to revise the way that you have studied in the past. Many of you are very passive students and will have more success if you study the material more actively.
The reason homework is assigned with answers provided is so that you can learn the material in a timely/daily manner. You are provided answers to that you can self-correct at home and find out what you know and don't know. Use colored stickies to indicate items that you need help with the next day − alert your teacher with an email about something that you would alike to go over the next day. When you detect some confusion, lack of understanding or general malaise, try to formulate a question and ask it. Refer to your notes, textbook, website, friends - email the teacher, ask in class, come after school. Most importantly, do something. It will not get better if you ignore it - in fact, it's likely to get worse. This course is very cumulative, and you must keep up with it, or you will soon feel overwhelmed. Getting the homework answers ahead of time from me does not mean you don't have to do homework. You absolutely should do homework - it will help you have success in this class. Homework is an opportunity, not a penalty. Homework should be "done" - not "looked at." Thus it is expected that you will "work" your homework. This means that you should use a pencil, calculator, extra paper if more room is needed and actually DO out the problems. Only through practice will you get better and faster so you can be confident and successful in class. It is not necessary to do every problem, you will need to self-regulate and determine how many are appropriate for you, for each particular topic - the number of problems that you need to complete will vary from assignment to assignment and unit to unit.

Active Study #StudyUp
It is very important that you actually study the material on a regular basis. Chemistry is so cumulative, material will pile up and you may quickly feel overwhelmed. Absorbing the information in small doses will help you retain it for longer. Many of you have had success up until this point just by paying attention in class, just doing your homework, and maybe a little bit of studying the night before a test. This method of study is not likely to be as effective in this particular course.
Active study is going to be far more effective for all students. Many of you may be employing the “browse” method of study: read, maybe reread, and “look over” the material. This often is not enough in chemistry. Active study must include writing. You should choose from a variety of active study methods to find the tools that work best for you. Consider choosing from the following list of active methods:
  • Using “stickies” when working problems or reading to remind what questions to ask in class the next day
  • Email your teacher to let her know what you need help with
  • Revising and rewriting class notes
  • Making review outlines
  • Discussing the information with classmates
  • Asking questions in class as soon as they arise, not waiting until too many pile up
  • Participating in a study group that meets regularly, not just the day before a test
  • Taking notes from the text, not just reading it
  • Making flash cards
  • Teach other people at home
  • Quizzing themselves or asking family members to quiz them
  • Writing out answers to the text problems rather than just reading them
  • Re-doing the homework problems
  • Re-doing Lab calculations
  • Explaining the Lab work that we are doing in school so that a family member can understand and enjoy
  • Actively participating in class by really listening and wrestling with the material
  • Restudy material in preparation for a quiz or test retake
  • Review preview quizzes and tests
  • Use the Vocabulary List and Chapter Summary at the back of every chapter to make a study guide
  • Seeking extra help with specific questions well before a test arrives
While some of you may need to increase the quantity and quality of time that they study, others of you may not need to increase the quantity of time but may need to change your methods and become more efficient in your study. Minimize your distractions and improve the efficiency of your studying by learning to #focus: stop snap booking, turn off the TV, quit chirping, get off the insta chat, listen only to music without words, halt the face-gramming, cease texting, and put your phone on silent (use that little moon! or put it in another room on silent). Some of you are very distracted by the “stuff” in your bedroom, so perhaps a better study location would be after school in my room, at the kitchen, or dining room table. Take a quick break every 20-30 minutes, and you’ll be done in no time. If you allow the distractions to take over, you’ll think you’re studying for hours, but really it’s only minutes.