The Christmas holidays are upon us; a time for socialising, partying, eating, drinking and… revising. Unfortunately. But your festive break need not be a whirlwind of stress, essays and panicking – there’s still time for plenty of merriment along with the stacks of revision. If you’re organised you can still do well in your January exams and have a good Christmas too. Here are some tips to make your life easier this holiday season.
1. How to Work; there are Two Methods!
Depending on how you work, one option to tackle the mountain of revision is to set aside a few hours a day, every day. If you’re an early bird then get up in the morning before the rest of your family are awake and there is still peace and quiet in the house. Settle down with a coffee and get stuck in! Or if you are a night owl then hit the books before bed! If you work better, little and often then getting a little bit done each day means that you’ll still have time to see friends and family throughout the holidays whilst not overloading yourself with unrealistic amounts of work.
There are the other types of people and these are the marathon workers – we all know a few, that just sit down and get it all done in one! You have to be mentally and physically tough enough to endure this extreme work method. It does mean you are anti-social for a few days, but once you’ve finished you are free! This could work for essays or coursework, but with revision you’ll need to refresh your memory nearer the exam.
2. Prioritise and Plan
Christmas is a time for family and there may be family parties and gatherings that you just can’t miss! Fill in your diary for the whole holiday so you can see when you realistically have spare time and fit your work days around your social days so you can maintain a good work-life balance.
All work and no play is not good, so make sure you do plan some time to “Jingle those Bells”.
3. Waste not, want not
There’s nothing worse than lying around doing nothing one day, and the next being inundated with work to do! Managing your time effectively is difficult but necessary. This doesn’t mean you have to work 24 hours a day, but perhaps lounging in your pyjamas eating a whole tub of Quality Street isn’t the best way to spend every day of your Christmas holiday.
4. Your Reward System
Lists are a great way to make sure that everything you need to get done is completed – there is nothing worse than waiting till January to find out that you’ve forgotten to do something! Each time you tick one off reward yourself, whether it’s with a five minute break, a cup of tea or a mince pie or four, having an incentive to finish will keep you going. A word of warning – consistent rewards with baked goods will lead to significant weight gain – maybe limit yourself to a box of mince pies, two tubs of celebrations and three Christmas puddings?
5. Your Children
It’s not only you that may need to revise for January, you may have children too who need to revise! A question that is on many parents lips this Christmas; should my child use a private tutoring agency over the holidays? At this time of year, students are often faced with returning to school in January with a series of exams to sit. Whilst a tutoring agency can help students sustain their knowledge over the Christmas period, many students look forward to the break – it’s a difficult decision, but one you have to make together.
If you decide to get help with tutoring over the holidays make sure that whoever you employ has the right qualifications to not only teach your child but to grade their work. Marking exams is a large part of revision. With the exams fast approaching you don’t want them practising on a completely different software or paper. It needs to be exactly the same to give them the best chance in the exam and to also help them feel more prepared for the real deal! Finally don’t overload your child, just like you they need a break too. Incentives such as family cinema trips and play dates are good places to start.