Recently i had a chat with one of my top students, she said something which surprised me.
“Chemistry is really simple. Especially Organic. Just need to remember the reagents and conditions, or the standard long explanations.”
I was intrigued.
Every couple of years, i get one of these students who actually enjoys studying chemistry specifically.
Probing deeper, i asked, “Why Chemistry? How about Math? Or Bio?”
“Math is not as straightforward as before, Bio is a LOT of memory work. Chemistry is more straightforward, i enjoy doing organic chem questions”
“When did you start to like studying Chemistry?”
“I used to fail Chemistry, until i attended Jeremy’s tuition lessons. (Jeremy’s my partner for O level Chemistry) He taught me how to organize the concepts and since then, i never had problems once i know how to organise my knowledge.”
So desu ne.
This is one way to make it easier to retain information. And there’s a lot of information to remember at A levels.
But make no mistake, this is not a secret hack to do well for A levels. My top student works very hard for her As, she pays 100% attention in class and does her homework diligently. She frequently engages in discussions with her friends regarding chemistry questions and challenges assumptions. She really reminds me of how i used to study chemistry, especially organic chemistry. Only difference between us is she writes it on her arm, i write them on cue cards LOL.
I would also like to share another secret to success, called incremental improvements. The top achievers in every field knows that to be the best and stay the best, you need to improve yourself a little every day. For example, you start to organise your concepts for Chemistry. This improves your retention rate by 2%. Then you discuss and teach your friends concepts which you know but they don’t. Reinforcing your own knowledge, improves your understanding by 2%. You pay 100% attention in class and lectures, this allows you to catch an extra 2% knowledge. You practise challenging questions and reflect on your mistakes, taking note how the questions are phrased. This improves your scoring by 2%.
Even though by themselves, each one seems insignificant. Together, all these improvements adds up to improve your grades significantly. This is really a very important strategy, using it daily and honing it to become a habit will put you in a great position to improve your studies/work or anything you wish to achieve.
Remember, it’s often the small things that adds up!
Have fun and good luck!