I’ve recently created a new homework routine that I’ve found to be beneficial to my routine.
Before, I would make a list of assignments and do them, trying to spread it out as much as possible and not do more than 45 minutes of the same subject at a time. I would also do four assignments and then take a short break. I did this to create variety and reduce overwhelm. While this system is effective, especially on large homework nights, I’ve developed a new one based on type of homework rather than subject.
Here’s the breakdown:
First, I go over all my lecture notes that I wrote that day. This normally consists of physics, art history, U.S. history, and trigonometry. This section wasn’t a part of my old system, and I’ve found that it helps to solidify the information I learned that day, making homework on those subjects run more smoothly because I’ve already freshly reviewed the concepts. In addition, it helps me to keep up with my lecture notes and annotating them so when I go back to study them before the test, I have helpful notes and colors to guide me. Annotating my notes after school has also streamlined my note-taking process in class, so I’m able to focus on getting the information down, rather than worrying about colors and headings.
Second, I do what I consider to be “work” homework. This typically consists of my physics and trigonometry homework – anything that is a very active and involved type of homework. Doing this second gets the problems I have to do out of the way, which I’ve observed is what I get the most stressed about not having done as my night is coming to a close. Doing this second also allows me to ask questions or collaborate with peers in a timely manner.
Third, I complete whatever homework doesn’t fit in the “work” category, more passive items. This often includes textbook reading/notes, creating a study guide or Quizlet that I plan on using the next day, or English book reading.
Then, I study. Having the rest of my homework completed before study time gives me an idea of exactly how much time I have in my evening left to study, and I’m not stressing out about other work. This frees my mind space to focus on the subject at hand. Studying usually consists of reviewing notes/study guides, Quizlets, watching helpful videos, doing practice problems, or reading summaries.
Finally, I do anything I need to to prepare for my classes the next day. This includes preparing note-taking outlines, printing handouts, or packing items I don’t normally need.
My new homework routine has been going excellently. It’s often difficult for me to jump straight into deep work, especially after a long day. Starting by reviewing my notes allows me to begin my homework session easy, gradually getting to the more involved work that must be done.
There are many homework systems, and I believe it’s important to try out different ones to see which works best for you. What’s your current course of action for completing your homework?