How To Keep Up Your Motivation and Make Studying Fun

By Shannen of Middle Way Mom.

Just like with any lofty endeavor, studying for DSST exams can become monotonous if you’re not intentional. Some people can plow through exam after exam with much vigor, but after a while, they will probably lose steam, possibly before meeting their end goal. How do you keep the exam process fun and keep up the motivation?

Create the carrot

Sure, gaining college credit after a successful exam is exciting, but sometimes there needs to be something more! Find someone to celebrate with and an activity you’d like to do! My daughter loves rock climbing, but it’s cost prohibitive to go often. When prepping for an exam, things like that are on the table as a possible incentive. Even if she doesn’t pass, going out to her favorite ice cream parlor is a treat to look forward to.

Make a deadline

We have learned the hard way that working without a deadline is bad news. There needs to be a planned end in order to keep from dawdling (at least at our house!). For some people, a deadline can feel like an exciting challenge. You know your student and what works for them. Would a deadline be like the finish line in a race? Will it motivate them? Or does a deadline haunt them and make them freeze? Find what works for you!

Phone a friend

Everything is more enjoyable with a friend! If your friend has different strengths than you, do a couple of tests back to back and help each other in each person’s given strengths. Do you love history, but your friend isn’t a fan? Take the lead with The Civil War and Reconstruction (worth 3 upper level credits!). Is your friend good with science, but you sometimes get lost? He or she can help you with the Astronomy exam.

Create for others

When studying for an exam, we are consuming a lot of information. While you’re studying, you can also create study materials for other people to use. If you have a blog, you can post your lesson plan and study materials online for other people. The switch from consuming information to producing can keep the mind fresh and dig those concepts in deeper in the mind at the same time.

Get hands on

Read. Take notes. Read. Take notes. Boring, huh? There are so many ideas for bringing a subject to life on Pinterest, you can get lost in it for hours! Are you studying for Here’s to Your Health? You can find a ton of ideas on how to model a human body, show the changes that happen to smokers, and breathe a little life into the subject. Some kids would prefer to just read and take notes in order to plow through the work, but for those who desire engagement, it doesn’t take too many Google searches to find something you can work with. Use some imagination to bring a younger child’s project to an older child’s level, when necessary.

Studying for exams doesn’t have to be the stereotypical picture of a student planted at a desk with pencil in hand. Keep it fun and you’ll enjoy more exams and more success in the long run!

When Shannen isn't helping her teen study for her next exam, she can be found blogging about their CBE adventures in homeschooling, parenting, and life with littles at foot at Middle Way Mom. Shannen also posts specific CBE information on her College in High School Pinterest board, and can be found on Google+, Twitter, and Facebook.

photo credit: CollegeDegrees360

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