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Year 11

How To Create A Weekly Study Rhythm | Step-By-Step Guide

Struggling to be consistent and organised? You're not alone, it is one of the most common student struggles! This step-by-step guide will explain how to create a study rhythm so you can beat your study goals!

We know how hard it can be to stay productive throughout the week. Fortunately, though, you can establish your own study rhythm in a couple of steps to help you stay on track.

 

But wait, what even is a study rhythm?

A study rhythm is a regular study routine that you can get into the habit of following. It’s sort of like finding your steady-state while running or maintaining a healthy sleep pattern.

We recommend planning a weekly rhythm where you assign yourself a couple of tasks to do on each specific day of the week, and then rinse and repeat for the following weeks.

This way you will have some variation in your workdays, so your study rhythm won’t feel monotonous, but still is predictable enough for you to remember.

 

Okay, why do I need a study rhythm?

Basically, having a consistent rhythm will make studying feel easier and more natural over time. You will know exactly what you need to do and when you need to study.

Often, we find ourselves overwhelmed by a massive list of things to do without a clear idea of how we can work towards completion. A study rhythm will help prevent such tasks from piling up, and give you an obvious goal and sense of direction for every day of the week.

 

How to create a weekly study rhythm, step-by-step!

So, how can I get one?

I thought you’d never ask! We’ll show you to make your own, step-by-step.

How to create a weekly study rhythm, step-by-step:

  1. Estimate how much free time you have on each day of the week
  2. Decide how much time you will need to allocate to each subject
  3. Assign tasks to be completed on each day on a weekly basis
  4. Keep at it!

Sounds too easy? Read on and give it a try.

 

Step 1: Estimate how much free time you have on each day of the week

Jot down all your regular weekly commitments apart from studying on your own. This way you will be able to easily see when and how much time you have to work with. Don’t feel pressured to quit extracurricular activities and hobbies in order to pursue academic success.

It’s important to stay in touch with the people around you and the things you love because this will ultimately boost your productivity and motivate you to engage in your study rhythm.

However, if you feel like you are being spread thin and find yourself dreading your social or extracurricular activities that you previously enjoyed, that probably means that you need to take a step back with some of your commitments.

At the end of the day, it’s about you feeling comfortable and confident with yourself!

Here’s how you can tabulate your weekly commitments: (Top tip: include travel time unless you can fly)

SundayMondayTuesdayWednesdayThursdayFridaySaturday
CommitmentsSchool: 9am – 3 pm

Cadets: 3pm – 5:30pm

School: 9am – 3pm

Swimming: 4pm – 5:30pm

School: 9am – 3pmSchool: 9am – 3pm

Football: 4pm – 5pm

School: 9am – 3pm

Family dinner: 5pm – 7pm

Volunteering: 9am – 12pm

Matrix Maths: 4:40pm – 7:40pm

Free timeAll day!6:30pm – 10pm6pm – 10pm4pm – 10pm5:30pm – 10pm8pm – 10pm1pm – 4pm

 

Step 2: Decide how much time you will need to allocate to each subject

A good way to figure out how to prioritise your subjects would be to honestly reflect on how you feel about your understanding of each subject and your past assessment results.

You can find a more in-depth explanation about that, here.

Once you identify your subject strengths and weaknesses, consider your upcoming exams and assignment deadlines. So, if you have a Maths assignment due in two weeks, this would also be a priority.

From here, you can estimate how many days a week you will need to stay on top of each subject. Make your studying more purposeful and efficient by also identifying what actionable tasks you can do to prepare for your upcoming assessments.

Here’s an example of how you organise your thought process:

SubjectConfidence rating (1-5)Upcoming assessment(s)No. of days needed in a weekActionable tasks
English Advanced3Module A timed essay
Week 7
3
  • Read and annotate texts
  • Write introductions and practice essays to a range of different questions
  • Revise responses with feedback from teachers
Maths Extension 14Fractal assignment
Week 4
2
  • Research
  • Draft
  • Edit
Future exams1
  • Complete Statistics notes
  • Do questions from past HSC and school exams (open book, open-book timed, then closed book timed)
Maths Extension 22Proof exam
Week 7
5
  • Revise content from Matrix Theory Book
  • Do proof questions from past HSC and school exams
Chemistry4Depth study report
Week 8
2
  • Literature review
  • Review experimental results and plan report
  • Draft and edit report
Future theory exams1
  • Complete notes for Module 7
  • Do questions from past HSC and school exams (open book, open-book timed, then closed book timed)
Physics3Practical assessment
Week 8
2
  • Do data processing questions from past HSC and school exams
  • Review practical skills section in Matrix Theory Book
Future theory exams1
  • Complete notes for Module 7
  • Do questions from past HSC and school exams (open book, open-book timed, then closed book timed)

Step 3: Assign tasks to be completed on each day on a weekly basis

So, now that you’ve identified what needs to be done and how long it will take, it’s just a matter of deciding when you will have the time to do it. If you don’t have many regular commitments, the amount of free time you have every day would be pretty similar all across, and in that case, you can look at other factors.

For instance, you might not want to do any more Maths study on that Thursday where you have 4 periods of Maths at school, or you might feel more creative for English after your Saturday morning run. Whatever works for you, works for us.

Hero Images Erics Hacks Reflecting on My 2020 HSCThis is how Matrix student, Eric Papadopoulos, planned his weekly rhythm:

As the wise Mr Papadopoulos puts it:

Your weekly rhythm is your best friend. It will motivate you, it will never judge you, it will become part of your family!

You can learn more about Eric and his study hacks here.

 

Step 4: Keep at it!

You’ve set yourself up for productivity, so trust yourself to follow your weekly rhythm through.

Some days might feel harder than others, but remember that by even starting your weekly rhythm, you’ve already done yourself a huge favour the rest is onwards and upwards from here.

If you need advice on how to prioritise and manage your tasks on a day-to-day basis when extra schoolwork comes in, you might this article helpful.

 

Dos and Don’ts

Do:

  • Make sure that you are targeting your weaknesses.

It sounds simple enough, but it’s fair to say that most of us would jump at any opportunity to avoid revising that Maths topic that washed over you in class or writing that essay you have been dreading. Like a trusty Matrix pen once quoted: “It doesn’t get easier, you just get better.”

So, work on the things you don’t feel confident about and don’t be afraid to ask your teachers for help. If you are a Matrix student, book a workshop or fill up the discussion board with your questions! Your teachers can’t sit your assessments for you, but they would love to help in any other way.

  • Leave time for a healthy personal life.

Life is too short to not spend it with your family and friends! A rule of thumb is to leave a half-day on the weekend for ‘me’ time and account for one or two social outings when planning your weekly rhythm.

  • Recognise that your weekly rhythm is flexible, so you can adapt to changing events.

So, it’s a friend’s birthday on Saturday and your study rhythm is telling you that you can’t go. It’s a pity that the barbeque wasn’t on Sunday because that would have slotted perfectly into your half-day off.

Here’s some reassurance: life changes and that’s okay. You won’t ruin the rhythm you’ve worked so hard to set up by going out on the wrong day. As long as you can make a realistic compromise, keep rolling and don’t hold back!

 

Don’t:

  • Be discouraged if you don’t immediately find your study rhythm.

Ongoing reflection and honest conversations with yourself will help you establish a sustainable study routine. Resilience is something you will progressively develop over your lifetime, so consider this as just another test and learning experience.

  • Be overly ambitious.

Please be realistic and leave time for things like meals and showers. Especially showers. If you find yourself drifting off in the middle of class, that’s probably also a sign that you aren’t sleeping enough for your rhythm to be effective. Don’t burn yourself out and listen to your body!

  • Forget about your weekly rhythm!Working too hard is a problem, but so is not working enough.

If you find yourself avoiding your weekly rhythm by justifying yourself with a very unconvincing string of excuses, you’ll know what we’re talking about. Especially at the beginning, it may feel unnecessarily tedious to follow your weekly plan, however, be assured that with time, your study rhythm will become natural and offer a sense of consistency and stability when working towards your long term study goals.

 

Get your tutoring schedule to work to your rhythm!

Matrix+ gives you the flexibility to study when you want as you want while still getting the same great resources and expert teachers! Learn more.

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Written by Amanda Shi

Amanda Shi is a graduate of James Ruse High School and is a digital marketing intern with Matrix Education. She hopes to be studying Dentistry at the University of Sydney in 2021.

 

© Matrix Education and www.matrix.edu.au, 2018. Unauthorised use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Matrix Education and www.matrix.edu.au with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

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