Study Skills

Why Retrieval Practice Will Help You Learn More

Why Retrieval Practice Will Help You Learn More

What is the name of that actor? You know the one. He was in The Hangover, loves the Eagles, he’s blondish, and he can sing. What.is.his.name? Ever had a moment like this one while I struggled to remember Bradley Cooper’s name? I can guarantee that […]

How to Be Productive Over Winter Break

How to Be Productive Over Winter Break

As both a student and teacher, I looked forward to Winter Break. (Probably even more as a teacher.) I always had big plans for the break. But somehow, most of that stuff just didn’t get done. Instead, I usually bonded with my couch. It’s sooo […]

Study Guide to the Rescue: How to Create Your Own

Study Guide to the Rescue: How to Create Your Own

“Will you give us a study guide?” If I had a dollar for every time a student asked me this question, I wouldn’t be writing this blog right now. I would be relaxing in my lounge chair on a tropical island somewhere. Seriously, I was […]

How to Master the Study Cycle and Improve Your Learning

How to Master the Study Cycle and Improve Your Learning

“Ms. P, if a teacher is good enough, their students will just learn. The teacher will teach and the students will just remember it all. Kids won’t have to write anything down or study or anything.” I will never forget the (misguided) young man who […]

How to Take Faster (and Way Better) Notes

How to Take Faster (and Way Better) Notes

“So, moving onto the next topic . . .” “Wait, Ms P! I’m still writing down what you said a minute ago. Can you go back for me?” I heard this a lot, usually from the same kids over and over again. Some students really […]

Why Everyone Should Reflect at the End of the School Year

Why Everyone Should Reflect at the End of the School Year

My first year of teaching was exhausting. Literally and figuratively. There were multiple times when I took a nap Friday afternoon and woke up the next morning.   But I survived my first year and was proud of what I had done. Yet, when I […]

Test Analysis: Why You Need to Start Using it Right Now

Test Analysis: Why You Need to Start Using it Right Now

“So, Ms. P,  what IS the Legislative Branch?” Shelly asked. On the day of the Legislative Branch test. As she began taking the test. Clearly, there were some holes in Shelly’s knowledge.   But she was not uncommon. Students would come to me right before […]

How to Stay Focused with the Pomodoro Technique

How to Stay Focused with the Pomodoro Technique

You know you have to study. There is an essay due tomorrow and a test on Friday. But when you sit down, your attention starts to . . . wander. You think about the test when working on the essay. And then you think about […]

AP Exam Prep: Make the Most of Your Time

AP Exam Prep: Make the Most of Your Time

My AP US History teacher was perhaps . . . not the best person to prepare us for the exam. I knew there was a problem when 1st quarter ended and we were STILL in the colonial period. I lived in Virginia, but come on! […]

Why Teens Need Waaaay More Sleep (And how to get it!)

Why Teens Need Waaaay More Sleep (And how to get it!)

I first realized something was wrong with teen sleep while student teaching. I taught 2nd-semester seniors (whoever scheduled that clearly hated me!) School started at 7:20 and I watched my students walk in with coffee, caffeinated sodas, and candy bars to wake themselves up. While […]