"Beware the Ides of March" said Shakespeare and "April is the cruelest month"
wrote T. S. Eliot. For students preparing for exams, this has never been more
With February already here and March around the corner, you are all probably
being urged by your parents and teachers to pull up your sock and get
ready to study hard. The very thought of having to plough through chapters and
chapters of so many subjects must bring a yawn to your faces and anxiety on the
faces of your elders.
But honestly, its not all that hard to score good marks. A few handy tips can
go a long way in getting you where you want to be without too much trauma or
trouble. With a shortage of time and a mammoth amount to be covered, the secret
is not to despair but prepare !
It is time management which plays a crucial role . Most of us procrastinate
i.e . we keep putting off things till the exams are almost upon us and then
panic rules. To avoid this you must get your priorities right.
Focus on subjects which you find most difficult and set aside most time for
these. At the same time do not spend all your time studying only this subject as
it will not only erode your interest fast, but your other subjects will be
So work out a time-table and never forget to give yourself a 15-20 minute
break after a an hour or an hour and half of continuous study. This is because
we all have something called attention span and learning plateau. After a while
our brain cannot assimilate information as efficiently and a short recess gives
our brain a break too, and we can begin anew.
Languages and Math are two things where last minute learning by rote will not
give you any results ; so in your time table set aside a time everyday for these
Divide your subjects and chapters in such a way that you finish
studying your entire portion at least two weeks before your exams . That way you
have ample time to go over them again and your revision will be thorough.
However, never despair, if on some days you cannot meet your target of
the time table you set yourself. We all suffer from deadline breakdowns; just be
happy and proud of what you have actually accomplished.
A very important , but much neglected, part of examination preparations
are your diet. Most children tend to neglect this aspect and think that
eating is a waste of time. The other extreme eats far too much to avoid going to
their study table ! But believe it or not, correct eating will have a
direct impact on your preparation and thus, on your results. The well- fed
brain functions and retains information much better. Food high in fibre content,
plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables, and lots of milk keep you energised
and alert. Chocolates chips and other high sugar, high fat food tend to make you
feel sluggish. Spicy food too can induce a feeling of lethargy .
Excerise along with food is a must. " Please , for heaven sake, let your
children go down to play, " pleads Dr, Kersi Chavda, an eminent Psychiatrist in
Mumbai. He appeals to the parents to let children play for at least an
hour a day as the exams draw close. Contrary to belief it is not a waste of time
- the brain must idle too in order to function at its optimum.
And finally, what is most important - be happy. Being tense and insecure will
only compund your problems. Indulge in hobbies or a certain amount of television
or games . Remember, it is a full circle - when do you do something that makes
you happy, you will do that thing well, and when you do something well it brings
- Prioritise - manage your time well
- Work out a time table
- Concentrate on difficult subjects but do Math and Languages regularly
- Leave time for revision
- Take ample breaks in between
- Eat right, exercise and be happy.
High Scoring Food Chart
- Two helpings of oranges or lemonade(nimbu pani) to take care of your Vitamin
- Whole grains, eggs and vegetables
- For in between snacks try yoghurt, dry fruits, fruit salads, khakras, garam
- Have an early dinner and a glass of milk later if you are studying into the