How to Become a Successful Student: 20 Things Good Students Do (2023)

I have been teaching teenagers for over twenty years. I got hundreds of students from the best universities in the United States. I also had students who never graduated from high school.

I know one thing for sure:You can learn to improve in school.

Personally, I was unspectacular in high school. I was mostly a low B student who got a few A's and a few C's. I didn't really stand out until I went to college and started learning how to be a successful student. When I discovered that successful students do similar things, I started doing the same things.

As a result, I graduated from college with honors and later earned a master's degree from the University of Chicago. Some children learn early on how to succeed in school. Others, like me, are late.

Fortunately, you don't have to wait to find out for yourself. You can get started right away by following these 20 steps.and learn how to be a successful student.

Organization will help you do well in school

How to Become a Successful Student: 20 Things Good Students Do (1)

1) You need a system

The research is clear. It's important that you have one.organization methodto keep track of tasks and due dates. Don't trust your memory, or your friends, or the state of mind you're in.

Instead, have a system in place so you don't waste time and energy trying to figure out what to do and when to do it. My top 3 suggestions are...

  • Cal. de Google
  • My StudyLife app
  • old fashioned exercise book

Honestly, it doesn't matter which organizational system you choose. The only thing that matters is that you have a way to keep track of all your tasks and deadlines. That's how you get smart in school.

Today most schools/teachers use an online system. Be sure to check in nightly and also have a monthly view of any long-term assignments.

If you want to do well in school, learn to improve your organizational skills.

2) Organize your priorities

Every day you will be tempted to leave something for later. you will feel likego to social networksbefore doing math or watching Netflix before reading. You will feel like playing video games before starting your work.

Don't give in to the urge.

Each day that you choose your priority over your impulses, you build self-discipline and self-love. Every day you give in to cravings, undermine your self-discipline, and start hating yourself and labeling yourself a procrastinator.

This is right. Self-discipline is a form of self-love. If you let your instincts rule your life, you will start to dislike your life. The urges are perfectly normal. However, it is entirely up to you to satisfy all your urges.

Be kind to yourself and take care of the important things. You deserve breaks and rewards... but only after you've taken care of your priorities first.

3) The plan, the plan, the plan

At the end of the month, look to the next month. Be sure to check all of your upcoming school and extracurricular commitments. Get an idea of ​​which week will be the busiest this month.

Check every Sunday for the next week. What projects, documents, quizzes and tests are on the horizon? What days and what times will you complete or study them?

Plan your week at your own pace and not just frantically with tomorrow's history work.

(Video) How to Become a Successful Student | Study Tips | Letstute

Every night, plan for the next day. They have a general Sunday design, but you have to make small adjustments every night.

4) Organize your school supplies

Get rid of unnecessary handouts and spreadsheets.

Charge your computer in the same place every night.

Put your backpack in the same place every night.

Researchers have recently demonstrated that we all have a limited ability to make decisions every day. In other words, as the day progresses and we make more and more decisions,our brain will experience brain fatigue.

If you've ever taken an ACT or SAT, you know exactly what I'm talking about. There's a reason these tests are done in the morning. That's because your brain has made fewer decisions and is "well rested".

If there's something you need to do every day, create a routine so you don't have to struggle to figure it out in the morning.

5) Organize your workspace

Find a distraction-free space.

Work at a tidy desk or table.

Provide adequate lighting.

Open only one browser tab at a time.

Put your phone in another room. Do this and you will see the results!

Researchers at the University of Chicago even discovered this.the mere presence of a switched off phone interrupts concentration.

Habits for success in school

How to Become a Successful Student: 20 Things Good Students Do (2)

6) Work in breaks and rest hours

I recommend 20-40 minute work breaks and 5-10 minute breaks. Don't ignore the breaks.Downtime really makes you more productive.

The only way to hold yourself accountable is to use a stopwatch. An added bonus is that you train your natural "sense of time".

This will come in handy during exams and standardized tests.

7) Exercise questions

If you're on a sports team, then you've got this covered. If not, at least incorporate daily walks. When you're stressed, the hormone cortisol builds up in your body and lingers.Physical activity is a great way to release and reduce excess cortisol.

For the same reason, you should maintain that heart rate in gym class. Don't give up because youmayonnaiseimprove your mood. If you want to reduce your stress levels, increase your amount of exercise.

8) Instant fix cram

Repeat a different theme each day. For example, math on Monday, physics on Tuesday, history on Wednesday, etc. By taking extra time to review concepts, terms, equations, problems, etc.Transfer information from your short-term memory to your long-term memory.

This will help you really learn the material and avoid over-studying before an exam. Learning to be smart in school means learning to repeat instead of overstudying.

You may have gotten away with it, but he'll catch up. The goal is to grow and learn. If you go in, you won't remember a thing and you'll end up in exactly the same place you were a week ago. In other words, no growth and no learning.

(Video) Be a Successful Student: 5 Habits of Highly Successful Students

9) Attend the class

That means two things: talking and listening. If you are extremely shy and hate talking, make it a goal.just about one thingevery day in every class. That's all, one thing. Even if you only ask one question.

Don't go through an entire class without asking a question or comment. Studies have shown thatAttending classes brings numerous benefits.

If you already consider yourself top of the class, you might want to work on your listening skills. There are always a few kids in each class who like to hear each other talk. Be careful and strike a good balance between talking and listening.

10) Read and follow instructions

Possibly more important than any of the other school boards here. Success in school is often determined by your ability to do exactly what is expected of you. This is usually a matter of following the instructions step by step.

Remember how you got that list of 20 instructions in 3rd grade? The first one said, "Read all the instructions first," so you had to do 18 different things, and the last one said, "Just do number 1 and number 2." reminder of the importance of following instructions.

In my 20 years of teaching, students have lost thousands of points simply for not following instructions. I say "easy" half-jokingly because it's not always that easy.

It takes patience and focus to make sure you fully understand what's expected, and sometimes it takes courage to ask a clarifying question.

Figuring out how to do well in school doesn't have to be complicated. Make it a habit to read and follow instructions carefully.

Tips and tricks to be a successful student

How to Become a Successful Student: 20 Things Good Students Do (3)

11) Be kind and polite

I'm not saying it's a kiss. I say talk to your teacher or at least the kids around you when you enter the classroom. Turn off your phone and put it away.

Say "sorry" and "thank you". It's all about good manners. Your teachers will notice. Casual sarcasm can be funny. Being too sarcastic can get old and turn people off.

It's no use making jokes at the expense of other colleagues or belittling them with your squeak. Once in a while with a good friend, that's fine. Everyday, not great.

You're going to have bad days, you're human... we all do. But please don't always dress in black from head to toe, walk everywhere with your head down, refuse to speak, rage at the world and call yourself the most misunderstood teenager on the planet.

The reality is that happier students have higher average grades.this study from Harvard University.

So remember this truth: you are indeed a very beautiful soul who have so much to offer this world. Don't be afraid to let that beauty shine through you. stop hiding it, I know it's there and I can't wait for you to realize how amazing you really are.Lights on!

12) Look for your teacher every time you feel "lost".

We didn't get into this profession to confuse children.

we didn't convertpaid teacher.

We try to change teenagers' lives and help create a better future.

We're here to help... just ask. Children who know how to do well in schoolKnow how to ask for help.

13) Write flashcards

Flashcards have been used by students for decades. Why?Because they have been proven to work.

There is a connection between writing and learning, so I encourage you to write it down.

Ask someone else to make sure you know these terms and don't make a mistake.

(Video) HOW TO BE A SUCCESSFUL STUDENT | high school study tips!

Also, don't wait until a few days before the test to write them. Instead, write your flashcards every night or week. This will help you review what is essential to study on a weekly basis instead of overwhelming yourself.

14) Thinking is connecting

As you spend your day learning new material, ask yourself, "How does this relate to other things I know?" At first, you're likely to make obvious connections.

For example, if you learn about the Athenians in classical Greece, make connections with all the other things you know about Greece at the time. Then start expanding and ask yourself how this relates to what was happening in other parts of the world at the time.

Continue making connections between time periods to date. What modern connections can you make between classical Greece and today?

Finally, make connections from the Big Idea to other disciplines. Ask yourself how classical Greek values ​​and ideas relate to literature, architecture, theater, psychology, science, mathematics, etc.

Making these kinds of connections is critical to becoming a better thinker. Thinking is connecting. The more connections you make, the better you get and make connections.

So, train your brain while sitting in the classroom. If you enjoy doodling, do it with intention and make connections.

The opposite of this approach is “just do it”. This mindset gets in the way of real learning.

If you only focus on doing your homework, it might seem like you know how to succeed in school, but you're missing out on a huge opportunity to grow and learn.

If your only focus is "just doing it," you're not making important connections. Instead, it sees all themes as completely separate.

Try to think interdisciplinary. your teachers knowthe value of interdisciplinary thinkingand it will help you, but you also have to do it yourself.

Many connections must be made; it just takes practice.

15) Going to the bathroom during transition periods

I understand that you can't always wait. Okay, but if you constantly leave the classroom, you're...

A) You interrupt your own learning and have to go back to class a little lost.

B) maybe something really important is missing.

C) send a text message to the teacher telling him that you are not taking the class seriously.

There is a big difference between a short water break and a 10 minute break in any class. Limit the number of requests to leave.

If you feel like you don't have enough time during the transition period, go to class immediately, drop your things and run to the bathroom.

mindset to succeed in education

How to Become a Successful Student: 20 Things Good Students Do (4)16) You can change your brain

A growth mindset is essential for success in school and in life. First, realize what all the research tells us... the brain is plastic and not fixed.

If you don't believe me, check out this TED Talk titled:The most important lesson from 83,000 brain scans.

Do you understand what that means?

That means "I'm not good at math" should be "I haven't done enough math to be good at it". Make no mistake and firmly believe these reviews.

(Video) The Secret to Student Success | Arel Moodie | TEDxYouth@ClintonSquare

We know that habits are difficult to change, but we also know that they are not impossible. You can change your brain. You can practice the habits of successful students.

17) Learning is more important than grades

You've heard it a million times because it's true. Learning is much more important than the lyric grade. I remember a college English professor telling everyone on the first day, "Nobody gets A's here." Many children dropped out of this course.

I wanted to show him that I could get an A. It was a writing class and he believed that a job could always be better, so he allowed us to check our work up to ten times. I took these opportunities to review, but I still never got an A.

Like many others in the class, I got a B. I worked harder to get this B than any of the four A's I got this semester. I also learned more about writing in this class than I did in all my other classes combined.

If you put learning first, the payoff will take longer than your academic career. I didn't get an A, but I gained something far more valuable: strong writing skills and confidence in my ability to write well.

18) What you eat matters

How do you spend most of your free time? Scroll through social media and click the like button. Do you spend hours entertained? Or do you spend hours getting rich?

Better yet, have you found that precious gem that is enriching and fun for you?

If you like business, read about creators in business. Find out about the economy, trends, influencing factors, keys to success, etc.

MeetSomething to dive deep into. If not business, then what? You decide. If you're not sure, that's okay. But that doesn't bother you.

Keep looking. Stay open to trying new things and learning about different topics and ideas.

How well do you keep up with current events? You don't have to be an expert, but you should have an idea of ​​the great stories of the country and the world. It will help you expand your mind.

What you consume matters. Don't let these guilty pleasures become daily priorities and habits, and don't forget number 1: you CAN change your brain.

19) Find the uncomfortable

If you do this, you will be light years ahead of your peers. A Yale University study has scientifically proven what you probably instinctively know:The only way to truly grow is to be uncomfortable.Typically, most teens avoid anything that takes them out of their comfort zone.

Try the opposite.

Do things you normally avoid. Say the things you wish you had the courage to say. Refuse to do something you just don't have time for. Saying "no" can be very uncomfortable for some.

Keep trying to figure something out for a lot longer than usual. At least once a dayleave the electronic deviceand do something a little scary!

As you start to prove to yourself that you can step outside your comfort zone, you will gain momentum. You will fall in love with the challenge and become unstoppable!

20) You're not getting your grades

Never forget that... the grades donodescribe yourself You are a person with all sorts of good qualities (and some flaws too). They are full of creativity and emotions. You are infinite possibilities. They are not, and never will be, a percentage or a letter.

Your GPA, your workload, your athletic or extracurricular performance, your admission to a specific college are different things.oneyou, but none of that defines you.

You already know this, but you often forget and end up talking to yourself. I know because the human brain does this.It is programmed to look for problems.

First, understand that this is just the sign that a healthy brain is doing what it should. recognize thatNegative prejudices are really normal.

Second, refuse to let this negative talk convince you that you're just a grade or an achievement. It's normal for the brain to look for trouble, but you still have options. You don't have to agree!

(Video) 5 Techniques of Every Successful Student

You can decide if you accept negative gossip and if you only consider a percentage or a letter. I hope you remember that you are so much more.

I believe in you. Now is the time to believe in you!


1. 5 habits of SUCCESSFUL students! (From an Ivy League student)
(Jason Lee)
2. How To Become A Successful Student
(Mitchel M.D.)
3. LIVE POD: Terrence Shannon declares for draft; Illini WBB lands transfer
(Illini Inquirer: Illinois on 247Sports)
4. 8.3.20 Student Success
(New York University)
5. How to be a Successful Student
(Hannah Whyte)
6. 2022 Global Student Success Forum: Presentation with Dr. Mandy Savitz-Romer, Harvard University
(Rosedale International Education)


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