Have you ever taken a class that just didn’t click with you? My son took freshman Spanish and struggled from day one. We tried everything to help, but he ended up taking the class again in the summer. We can laugh about it now, but it took a toll on his studies because he had to devote countless hours on a subject he hated – and it hated him back! If you are struggling in a class, use some of the strategies below to get you back on track.
- Ask for help.
Start by asking your teacher for clarification of topics you’re just not getting. This might be as simple as asking more questions in class or seeking help after class. If the teacher is the problem, then it’s time to get a tutor. Some schools provide free tutoring, so start there.
- Lean on your friends.
You probably know someone who excels in the class you’re struggling in. If so, ask that person to work with you on difficult concepts, share their notes, and review their flashcards. You could also form a study group to make your study time a bit more fun.
- Get focused.
When it’s time to study, find a quiet place to work, turn off the TV and music, and ignore social media. Better yet, place your phone in a different room! You might even turn off all notifications for the rest of the semester. The constant dings to your phone are very distracting.
- Re-prioritize your schedule.
Take a close look at your schedule and see what can give. If you have a part-time job, you might need to cut back on your hours. If you volunteer a lot, take a break for the semester to focus on your schoolwork. It’s okay to say no to friends and activities to get your grades up.
- Save gaming and Netflix for the weekend.
We all have guilty pleasures that are time sucks! However, when your grades are on the line, save gaming, social media, and Netflix binging for the weekend. By then, you will truly appreciate the break.
- Ask for extra credit assignments.
If extra credit options are available, do them! If not, ask for them! Your teacher will be impressed by your willingness to go the extra mile to improve your grade.
- Examine your options.
If you keep sinking deeper each week, then It’s time to discover all your options. If you’re partaking in AP/honors class, ask if you could take the regular pace class instead. Is it possible to drop that class and take it again next semester or in the summer? Finally, if the class is not required for graduation or for college admission, consider dropping the class. I’m no quitter, but there are times when you need to throw in the towel.