AAA #33

Designed by: Lay Kai En, Ashley (21-O1)

Q1: I hope I don’t flunk my exams. I try not to have expectations but I subconsciously do and I end up disappointing myself when I don’t meet them. What should I do? 

Hi there! Aunt Agatha hears you, we’re sure this is a common sentiment amongst many students and we would like to offer you some advice!

Before anything else, we understand that as a student, it may seem that grades are everything. Those letters on our results slip seem to define us, but we must remember to remind ourselves time and time again that they do not! Who you are as a person is much much more than how many marks you score on a test, and how many ‘A’ grades you obtain. 

Next, having expectations for yourself is not necessarily a bad thing, but do make sure that the goals you set are realistic so that you don’t unnecessarily disappoint yourself. ! It’s impractical to expect to jump from a ‘U’ grade to an ‘A’ grade almost immediately, so try to take it one step at a time. This way, you will find yourself less stressed and it will also be a lot easier to cope in the long run. Reaching these goals will also be much easier, and these short-term, realistic goals will provide you with small boosts of motivation on your journey to reaching your long-term goals!

Last but not least, Aunt Agatha would like to assure you that it is only the Mid-year Examinations, and that there are many other opportunities for you to pick yourself back up. For now, celebrate the good results and don’t be too disheartened by the bad, and we wish you all the best!

Q2: Blended learning has been quite challenging for me as the workload is usually a lot bigger than normal school days. How do I cope with the workload and manage my time better at home?

Hey there! A lot of us are probably in the same situation right now and I understand that it can be hard to get used to Blended Learning, especially for those of us who prefer a fixed schedule and are used to our campus’ study environment. Aunt Agatha hears you and is here to give you some advice! 

Firstly, to improve your concentration at home, you can create a study space to stay organised. Most times, many students find it hard to focus on online lectures or meetings because they do not have a consistent workspace to study routinely. As a result, they tend to be distracted and lose productivity. Thus, you might want to establish a regular study space, whether it be a study table in your room, a countertop or even the living room table! 

Next, you can practice time management by creating a weekly schedule to follow. You can designate certain hours of the day to certain subjects and you can also set frequent reminders on your phone to stay on track! I know first-hand that this is easier said than done because I, too, find it quite challenging to follow timetables without anyone’s supervision. However, if you stay consistent and persevere through all your impulses to diverge from the schedule, it is possible to train yourself to follow it closely! 

Lastly, I would like to end off by saying that practice makes perfect! As long as you stay consistent and follow a schedule that suits you, you will definitely grow accustomed to Blended Learning. Good luck! 

Q3: With promos/prelims right around the corner, how can I plan my time such that I can get the most out of my revision, without burning out too quickly?

Hello there, Aunt Agatha here! Don’t worry, that is a problem many students commonly face with such a large scope for the end of year exams. Naturally, you would need to plan for your revision wisely to maximise your learning!

Firstly, your revision plans need to be detailed! Do plan out down to the exact chapter you are going to revise or the specific pages or topics of the practice questions. Of course, you would also need to allocate a time slot for every separate task you aim to complete! Even if you are unable to complete your pre assigned task within that time frame, just continue on to what was next on the list, instead of letting it snowball.

Secondly, always remember to take care of yourself, both physically and mentally, to ensure you never burn out in this season of revision. For example, you could plan for short breaks spread out across the day, giving you consistent mental breaks to ensure you can continue working productively! Do remember to exercise regularly, try a quick jog in the morning or stretching before bed, and don’t forget to keep yourself hydrated. We cannot stress how important it is to keep yourself healthy in this stressful period, which helps boost your morale and keep your energy levels up throughout the day!

Overall, these are some little but helpful habits that you could cultivate whenever exam season rolls around. Do remember to customise your schedule to fit yourself best and allocate time to pursue your interests!

Q4: Since coming to JC I’ve been falling behind in my academics even though I’m studying the same way I did when I was scoring well in secondary school. I’m starting to lose motivation and focus; what should I do? 

Hi, Aunt Agatha knows what you mean! Entering this new phase of your life means that many things will be changing, and study methods are likely to be one of them. Because the way the syllabus is structured is different and the content taught is more challenging, it is not uncommon for students to have to switch up their study methods to keep up with their academics. 

You need to remember that pure memorisation will no longer get you far. Maybe it is time to gain some deeper insight on what you are studying, so that you can better understand the workings behind the content presented to you. This can help you formulate more insightful responses to the questions in exams, and also be able to link various concepts together better! If you are unsure how to begin, you can start by reviewing your notes and jotting down areas that you are unsure of, and follow up by consulting a teacher or external tutor. If you have friends whom you know are well-versed in the topic, you can approach them too! Who knows, they might be able to explain it to you in a way that you understand more easily than if you consulted a teacher. 

Feeling worried that  your old study methods are no longer working the same as they used to is completely normal! Changing study methods might seem daunting, but don’t give up! If you’re feeling discouraged, try talking to some friends about it, and maybe even create a study group! Whether face-to-face or virtual, study groups can help your motivation, as well as hold you accountable. 

Ultimately, find a study method that suits you best (that is not just pure memorisation!) and stick to it! If you’re concerned that it might not be suitable for school, you can review your study plan with a teacher, and ask them if it is feasible. All the best for your exams; you got this!

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