Ultimate productivity guide revealed

How to be the most diligent, confident and successful student anywhere
Study habits such as active learning, active recall and spaced repetition can be beneficial to students by helping them remember information more effectively.
Study habits such as active learning, active recall and spaced repetition can be beneficial to students by helping them remember information more effectively.
Christiana Vucea


Within a person’s life, high school is one the most formative stages they will ever go through.
It is during this time that adolescents mature into adults, that one’s sense of identity is developed and a person’s life trajectory is decided.
High school is supposed to be a transformative, life-changing experience, but for many, it is a challenge.
Although there are a multitude of reasons for why students struggle, part of the blame can be attributed to the fact that few students are equipped with the essential skills needed to succeed in high school.
This article seeks to introduce the reader to some ways to get a hang of high school life.



Anybody who has been in high school knows that one of the most challenging things about high school is learning time management.
Sophomore Dipa Chammyae often struggles with staying aware of the time.
“Your mind is somewhere else and you let the time just pass,” Chammyae said.
Chammyae is not alone. Many students struggle with managing all their responsibilities. Thankfully, there are plenty of ways that we can manage our time better.
Firstly, you need to create a task-management system to help you keep track of all your activities. Your task-management system should be tailored to you. There is variance on what constitutes the system, but experts such as Thomas Frank usually recommend having a combination of a calendar, a planner, and a note-taking system.
Secondly, you need to find ways to prevent yourself from wasting time. This can be done via apps such as Freedom which allows you to block off distracting apps when you are working.

The Pomodoro Technique is a time management strategy in which one does 25 minutes of focused work at a time, with a five-minute break in between. The technique is named after the Italian word for tomato. (Christiana Vucea)

It is also important to make sure that you try out different time-management strategies as Mr. Joseph Jelen, the IB Coordinator here at RM, suggests. Some ideas strategies include the Pomodoro Technique (of which Mr. Jelen is a fan), time-blocking and day theming.
Lastly, make sure that the schedule that you create for yourself is realistic.
“Don’t write your dream schedule,” sophomore Aisosa Ojo-Odiase said. “Don’t write the schedule that you want to have where you are studying for 5 hours; just write the schedule that you know you can achieve, even if it’s just to study for 30 minutes a day.”

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Stress Management

Stress is another challenge that high school students deal with.
The key thing about stress-management is to not place unnecessary burdens on yourself. Know what you can handle and try not to go beyond your limits.
That being said, it would be a great disservice to yourself if you did not use high school as an opportunity to challenge yourself. The reality is, you can’t grow without struggling, and by fleeing from difficulty, you are actually preventing yourself from becoming a stronger person.
“Stress is one of those things that isn’t going anywhere for anyone,” Mr. Jelen said.
On the more practical side, it is important to practice self-care and take breaks. Try and get as much sleep as you can and do not neglect eating.
Lastly, if you find yourself overwhelmed with stress, there are plenty of ways to get help. The MCPS website has a directory of resources, and RM has counselors who are there to care for your wellbeing. Friends and family can be great sources of comfort, as can teachers.
The upsurge of stress in high-school is disconcerting and difficult for many, but with the proper support and mindset, you can get through it.

How to Study

Finishing our triumvirate of high school stumbling blocks is the lack of knowledge about proper studying methods. Many students work hard, but often, their hard efforts aren’t reflected on paper as they aren’t studying effectively. Learning how to study properly can fix that issue. An added benefit to knowing how to study correctly is that you can get good scores with less effort.
The first thing to know about studying properly is that you need to be in the proper environment and state of mind to study. You can’t expect to get stellar grades if you study in a haphazard, lazy manner. Establish a fixed schedule for when you will study. During this time, make sure that all of your focus is devoted to studying. Eliminate any distractions and create a set-up that will get you into your groove.

Keeping track of your assignments and their due dates with a calendar or agenda is essential to getting all your work in on time. (Christiana Vucea)

After that, you will need to find a studying habit that works for you. Like your task-management system, your studying pattern is going to be tailored to you, but throughout the years, scientists have found some methods that have been proven to increase students’ understanding.
One of these methods is active learning. This means that you actually try to engage with the material instead of just passively reading it. Examples of this include making mind maps, flashcards, vocabulary lists, creating and answering practice questions and so on.
Another method is active recall and spaced repetition. With active recall, instead of reading notes over and over again to remember a topic, you try and recall what you learned without your notes. This engages your long-term memory, thus helping you remember the topic better. Spaced repetition on the other hand is when you practice a topic over and over again on a regular basis. This method helps you remember the material on a long-term basis.
The methods mentioned above are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to learning about how to study.
There is a wealth of research on how to best study in addition to the cornucopia of products designed to make studying a more efficient process. This onslaught of information might be overwhelming, but students should try to explore as much as they can about the proper ways of studying.



This article is not meant to solve all of your productivity problems. There is no way that we will ever be perfect students. We will experience challenges, and hard times are to be expected. Despite this, the true value of high school is in its hardship. Instead of fretting over the trials and tribulations that await us, we should view these challenges as a means to become better people.
In the end, we will all look back at our high-school experience and laugh, knowing that if not for all its difficulties, we would have never acquired the discipline, composure and mental strength to succeed.
So what are you waiting for? Get to work!

Resources Page 


Time Management

Limiting Screen Use

How to Study

Stress Management

More to Discover