Your Guide To Group Study Sessions
Winter break is upon us, which for some might mean ski trips and Christmas decorations, but for others (aka AP students), it might mean cracking open those Barron’s books you purchased during the summer and haven’t taken a look at since. If you’re lucky, you might have a few friends in town who are doing the same thing. Here are a few tips for a productive study session from some chronic studyers.
# 1. Snacks
Okay, so this may seem a little superficial, but snacks are actually extremely important when it comes to maintaining energy and focus. Think about it, if you’re deep into some calculus problems and you feel a little hungry, would you rather crack open a bag of chips or make yourself an entire meal? I have not met one single person who is so good at multitasking they can cook and find second derivatives at the same time. That being said, it is extremely important to stock up on snacks that give you a good boost of energy and don’t make you want to die. Things like chocolate may not be such a good idea. Instead, maybe opt for this selection of snacks (not sponsored):
Boom Chicka Pop Light Kettle Corn:
We all love a good salty popcorn, but it's important to remember that salt can make you VERY thirsty, which is not something you want when you’re prepping for a long focus session. However, this popcorn is lighter on the salt, and relatively healthier than most other junk foods, so it hopefully won’t make you feel like crap.
Cliff Bars (or any kind of “healthy” snack bar):
These things are so underrated. They’re so filling it’s basically like having an entire meal, and they’re (relatively) healthy with lots of proteins. If you need quick pick me up during a particularly long study session, these are your best friends.
Okay, I know this list was technically supposed to have healthy snacks, but coffee is just … a necessity. While everyone might not drink it, it is a substance designed to get you through times like these. Remember, caffeine is a drug, so know your limits and don’t get too hyper or you won’t be able to focus at all. (The coffee doesn’t have to be from Dunkin’, that’s just my personal favorite. Having the coffee iced is probably best, since you will drink it faster and the cold will wake you up even more.
In order to have a study session, you need to plan a study session (duh). It’s important to plan it at a time you know you won’t be burnt out. Decide what subjects you’re going to study for, and how you’re going to do it (flashcards, making review guides, creating practice quizzes for each
other, etc). Without a plan, you will get sidetracked easily and won’t be efficient with your time. It is important to implement breaks throughout your session to let your mind rest so when you are working, you are focussed during the time you are working.
Make sure that you’re holding each other accountable and not getting super distracted. Phones can be useful for studying sometimes, but if the group is on their phones instead of working, it might be a good idea to set them down somewhere until you’re done.
Once you and your friends have finished doing what you need to do, it's time to relax! You're free to finish any snacks you didn't eat, and be on your phones as long as you want.