How to Stay Organised - Tips too Perfect for your own Good

Written by Rebecca Fayad - Year 12 - Managing Director and Co-Founder of KCDSpeaks


Hello everyone! Now that the school year has started after months of being lazy (and occasionally productive), it is important to know how to manage your time and stay organised! Here are tips to help you manage your school-personal life from an A-Levels Student!


1. Have a Timetable

It is important to plan your day every day because it will help you stay focused while doing work. I use the free app ‘TimeBloc’ on my phone, which lets me plan out my day. Do not forget to reserve time for fun, social media, being lazy, or whatever you want to do. If you don’t, you’ll waste more time on unproductive laziness instead of work.


2. Note down everything

Whenever you have an idea, a complaint, or anything on your mind, note it down on a sticky note, in your books, or even on your hand if you need it! One of my top suggestions would be the app and website ‘Trello’. Last year, the current Year 12s were using this app which we shared with everyone. No one forgot when we had homework, tests, or even birthdays!


3. Start your work early!

I know you’ve heard this 1,000 times, but when have you really done your best in last-minute assignments? Set yourself a deadline earlier than the teacher has for you. You don’t procrastinate because you are lazy, but because you think you have too much time. When you limit this “too much time” you’ll be able to stay up to date on your deadlines.


4. What to do when you left your assignment till the last minute

However, if you do by any chances find yourself tight on a deadline (don’t worry it has happened to all of us!) then the first thing you should do is ask your friends if they have done it as well! Trust me, this might seem ridiculous but when you realise that your friends are in the same position as you, you’ll feel much more confident, and the goal will seem much more achievable (bonus point if you ask the person who always gets top marks on their work). Then ask for an extended deadline. Unless it's a formal exam, teachers are likely to give you an extension even if it’s just a couple more days, and then you can do your best!



5. DO NOT SKIP YOUR HOMEWORK

“Miss, I didn’t know we had homework” “Sir, you said it was due next week” “Miss the dog ate my homework” “Sir, I didn’t understand the topic”. The teacher knows you’re lying, they just don’t make a big deal out of it because you are only hurting yourself when you don’t do the homework (and they just quietly mark it on iSams). If the first question is hard, skip it and do the rest. Don’t just stop at it and assume the entire paper is unachievable. Your grades are 100% going to increase if you complete your homework as if they were a test.


6. If you lost track one week, get back on track the following week, not next term.

I know we’ve all done this. When you haven’t been revising as you should or attending your ECAs as you should you say “Oh it’s fine I’ll get back to it next term”. That is a long time - why not get back at it next week? Everyone has weeks where everything is going wrong, but that should not cause your next week to go wrong too. This has the same energy as “I’ll start working out and eating healthy next year for my new year’s resolution”. Why wait that long?


7. Keep everything in one place

This is one of my greatest regrets, something that I wish I did for all my subjects at GCSE. Two of my friends and I shared a google document for our Geography GCSE. Since we didn’t use books for the subject, we thought it would be nice to all put our notes in the same document and share it so we get distinct points of view, and divide the work. And let me tell you: It was the best decision we’ve ever made! All the work, keywords, assignments, study notes, case studies, and anything that we would have traditionally put in our own presentations, we would put in this shared document. (If you have ever been in Mr Barker’s class you’d know what I mean {KQs}). So while other students had dozens of folders with tens of presentations and countless resources, we had all of them in these 150 pages document, so for revision, nothing could have made it easier. The bonus point is that when you are doing classwork, you can divide the work as you are all typing on the same document and that if one of you is absent, you’ll miss nothing because all the notes are there! Do it for all your subjects, your grades are begging you!


8. Use Quizlet

I don’t know about you, but Quizlet is my go-to app when memorising. Like I said before, I like all my resources to be in one place, so having physical flashcards don’t mix with my online approach, so Quizlet it is! You can create folders, use flashcards from other creators, and even share them with friends. Physics Equations, Chemistry Formulas, and Biology Keywords here we go!


9. If you don’t keep everything in one place...

If you are writing in your copybook and you are getting information from a presentation, write it down. If you are writing in your literature book and you are taking notes from a video, write it down. It is so important to include phrases like, “More information on Presentation on Google Classroom 21/03/2020” so that for revision, you’d have access to everything.


10. You don’t have to make it look good

I am not saying that you shouldn’t make it look good, and I am not saying that making it look ugly will help you. But if you spend over 20 minutes of the lesson taking out all your colourful highlighters and designing the most beautiful title while doodling a little drawing on the side, then you should notice that your books are filled with more art than information. Which is only all right if it is your art project. Don’t get me wrong, but what is all this beautiful art going to serve you, if you have two sentences written in there? Writing in beautiful handwriting, and colour coding with highlighter is an important aspect of being organised, but this is not the entire point. Unless you own a YouTube channel or an Instagram account on aesthetic notes, then if you are wasting more time on these instead of listening and completing your work, then you should consider minimising the effort.


11. Break down tasks into smaller tasks

You have one week to finish exercises 1 to 25, complete 5 on each school day. You have to read pages 1 to 47 for Wednesday, read a bit in the morning, before you start your homework, and before you go to bed. Finishing minor tasks will give you this sense of achievement that will make you finish all your schoolwork before you even notice!


Here they are everyone, my 11 tips for staying organised this coming year. I hope they help you, and if you have any questions come and talk to us, we’re there for that after all! Love, Rebecca Fayad Y12.


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