It’s pretty simple really – I call it “The Reverse Calendar”.
In order to achieve success in school, studies have shown that IQ is not the #1 contributor. In fact, an important contributor to student success is a balanced life that allows you to enjoy life while working hard; avoiding the ‘I give up’ syndrome.
Start with a blank monthly calendar. You can download one here. Write down all your due dates. Now an important and often missed step: cross out times when you will be doing other things and will be unable to study – things like sports, time with friends, church, time spent on hobbies, time spent at a job, etc. Lastly, working backwards from the due dates, write in what needs to be done each day – things like: read pp 20 – 45 or spend 1 hour proof reading or brainstorm or write an outline.
Most people hate that feeling of unfinished tasks hanging over their heads. Not only does the reverse calendar break down large assignments into manageable chunks, life will feel more balanced and you will feel less anxious. Students that plan this way will develop good work habits (while still working hard) and will be less likely to throw in the towel and give up, finding rest at the end of each day knowing that the daily tasks are complete.
For more, watch this Ted Talk:
Douglas Barton “What do top students do differently?”