This will be the first in a Series of articles on “How to be an Excellent xxxxxx”. Since James (the reason why this blog was built) is still in grade school, I have to adjust the topics to somewhere closer to his age. Hence, the start of this series is about being an excellent student.
There’s probably hundreds of tips on how to become an excellent student. Why excellent? Because 80% of students can easily be “good” or “average” student. It’s always best to aim for the highest possible goal – so even if the goal is not reached – it is still possible to reach a level above what other people has reached. It’s not for personal pride – or even for the family’s pride – but rather to be a model for other students, and to be a positive contributor not only to to other students but for the teachers too.
* Time management – Budget your time for different activities. Time for homework, projects, play, reading, etc. Learn how to prioritize what you need to do first as there are so many things to do at the same time. Spend your time on one project at a time so you can devote your full effort on it.
* Rest – Rest is probably the most underrated factor in any endeavor. Rest makes a person recover from intense or extended efforts. We are only alloted a certain physical capacity to be able to work on anything. With rest, our body is able to recover and physical capacity is kept at its optimum level.
* Proper nutrition – garbage in, garbage out. What we eat defines how our body and brain will respond to stresses of daily life. A diet rich in fruits and vegetables gives a student enough antioxidants to maintain a strong immune system. Contrary to popular beliefs, Fats (mostly monounsaturated) are necessary for proper brain function. Protein is necessary to repair or build tissues, organs, muscles, hair, nails, etc. in the body and to so it should be part of the diet. Carbohydrates are necessary but overconsumption of carbohydrates is the cause of unwanted weight gain and even obesity.
* Exercise – when you are younger, you can basically do most of the exercises without worrying about overtraining. There is a limit of course. Extreme workouts can be counterproductive (there will be a separate post about this).
* Studying – sometimes when you read an article or a book while doing research, it looks like it is so hard to comprehend. Take a break from it first. Find a quiet spot and think about nothing for a few minutes. Then read it again. Nothing yet? Read it again. There is no substitute for spending the time to learn something new. You can do a short cut by getting a tutor.
* Listen – Always focus on the teacher. Oftentimes, when the teacher is explaining a subject matter – everything seems so clear. Before an exam, you may need less time to study because you paid attention to the teacher. Avoid disrupting the class with unnecessary comments, jokes, etc. It annoys the teacher, and disrupts everyone else’s learning cycle.
There is quite a few more tips and we invite the readers to come up with their own. The above is what we have for now to make things simpler. Have fun at school – strive for excellence!!!