The Eighth Page

How to Get Better Grades

Here at Features, we know that work is not what you might call “fun” or “worth your time.” And so we have developed a foolproof method for improving your grade in the final half of fall term. Get more sleep. This term let’s shoot for 5 hours on Tuesday and Wednesday night and at least 2 1⁄2 on Monday and Thursday. If you plan your afternoons wisely, I’m sure that you can get this kind of shut-eye. This will enable you to stay awake in class and tell Mr. Kuda the truth about how much you slept the night before. Eat breakfast. In recent years it has been scientifically proven (with mathematics and lab mice) that students who eat breakfast in the morning function much more efficiently during the school day. So wake up those few extra minutes earlier, stop by Commons, and fix yourself some yogurt, a bagel, or a waffle. This is also an opportunity to learn about oneself. Do you wait for the butter to soften, or do you settle for the ready-to-spread margarine? Reflect. Take up golf. If you approach grades with the attitude of a golfer, then the lower number you receive, the better your grade is. WARNING: A hole-in-one may put you on academic probation. However, this is a chance that us “duffers” have to take. Go to Conference Period. I understand that conference period is a time for finishing the paper for your third period class, getting a bowl of Captain Crunch at continuous dining, or (for the Class of ’07) the mysterious and enticing “Senior Tea.” However, if you look back in PA history, you will see that conference period originated as a time (or “period”) when a student and instructor could have a private conference (or “conference”) regarding difficult material. Call me old-fashioned, but students should utilize this time as our forefathers intended. Get a Peer Tutor. As Phillips Academy students, there is nothing that we like more than being outsmarted by our peers. So why not go ahead and make it formal? Also, I hear that Miles Silverman ’07 is a chemistry tutor…and he’s dreamy. Stop reading Cliffs Notes, and start reading the book. When you say you don’t have time to read the book, you’re lying. There is always time, you just spend it “poking” on the Facebook, watching “Project Runway,” or whatever else it is that you choose to do instead of expanding your literary horizons. Give reading the original a shot… your Facebook friends are poking at you, not with you. Study in the Garver room. Do you ever feel like the chair in your room is just too comfortable, and is a distraction from your work? Do you long for the sound of hacking coughs to interrupt your train of thought? Do you think it’s funny when you are trying to read, and someone finds it entertaining to turn your desk light on and off? If so, the Garver Room is the place for you. Located in the historic Oliver Wendell Holmes Library, its chairs are hard and uncomfortable, there’s always some random sound to distract you, and surely some jerk will think it’s really funny to turn those big desk lights on and off. Prepare to learn! Enjoy more fish. Fish, as you know, is considered “brain food”. Luckily it is in plentiful supply in our beloved Commons. Today look out for the Seafood Salad Wrap, Fried Fish Sandwich, and Swordfish Tips with Lemon! This tip is both tasty and sure to get your mercury levels soaring. No matter what grades are printed onto this week’s midterm reports, I am sure that focus, hard work, and a little help from Features’ study tips will bring you success at the end of the fall. And if you don’t get the results you hoped for, realize that your self-worth can’t be measured on a scale of 0-6…there’s plenty of fish sticks to go around during winter term.