The Chipper

Midterm Survival Guide

‘Twas the night before midterms and all through house, every student was studying, including the mouse.

Will Archer, Editor in Chief

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‘Tis the season for unnecessary projects and absurdly long mandatory study guides because teachers in every department are gearing up for the end of the semester. Most students either know already whether they can exempt or not, or are currently analyzing PowerSchool and planning the most optimal strategy to squeeze out those last few points required for the ever-coveted exemption. Legend has it that some students each semester make good enough grades to be allowed to skip all of their testing and begin their break early! However, such examples are few in number and most likely you’ll have to drag yourself out of bed for at least one midterm.

If you’re a freshman, or even a sophomore, this is one of your first few forays into the CHS end-of-semester testing schedule, which can be a challenging gauntlet that tests the sanity and patience of even the most battle-hardened veterans. So to keep you sane we’ve compiled some midterm survival advice from some of those battle-hardened veterans:

  • Don’t cram. This is probably the most important advice you’ll hear. Studies show that you remember better when you study over a period of time instead of all at once. This takes some discipline, but you’ll thank yourself when you get a good night’s rest before the test. Speaking of…
  • Don’t Forget to Eat and Sleep. Breakfast is the most important meal of the day and crucial to making it through the morning testing. Also, getting the right amount of sleep is one of the best things you can do to boost your performance. So, don’t stay up all night studying or watching a show; it’s not worth it.
  • Midterms Cover Everything But Don’t Go Into Detail. One important thing to remember if you’re studying for a midterm is that the test is unlikely to scratch any one topic at more than a surface level (unless the midterm is a standard unit test). You can get by on most midterms with summaries of the material. If you’ve been attentive and active in class the whole semester, you might not even need to study for it.
  • Just Because You CAN Exempt, Doesn’t Mean You Should. If you’re a point or two away from the next letter grade, it’s probably worth it to take the midterm if you think you can do well on it. That being said…
  • Don’t Kill Yourself Trying to Get the Grade. There’s a lot of academic pressure and that’s a good thing, but getting good grades isn’t worth sacrificing your physical or mental health for. If you’ve been studying for two hours, take a walk, watch some TV, decompress. A shockingly high number of high schoolers experience test anxiety and feel burnt out frequently from all the work. Even though it’s crunch time, don’t forget to destress a little.
  • If You Have Ms. Stone, Don’t Even Bother Studying. The study guide is punishment enough.

All in all, midterms aren’t that bad. Most teachers make their midterms fairly easy, and if you feel like you’re truly struggling with the material, it isn’t too late to go to a study hall or FAB session with your teacher.

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