8 Ways to Make Studying More Fun

Group of teens studying

The “S” word elicits various responses from teenagers. Some students are eager to dive in and tackle the books while others have perfected the art of avoidance. Regardless of your stance on studying, one thing's for sure—it has to be done. So, rather than spend your time and energy coming up with ways to dodge your homework, why not look at how you can learn more efficiently, increase productivity, and make the process a whole lot more enjoyable?

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Get in the Zone

Create a study zone that is comfortable and functional. Pick an area of the house you haven't used before. Sit in a bean bag rather than a chair. Use a stand-up desk and computer station instead of the kitchen table. Set up a space in your bedroom or home office that is just for studying. Put some time into making it a place you want to be; decorate it, paint a wall, or get some new furniture.  

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Hands-On Learning

Consider going on a field trip to experience the topic firsthand. For example, if you’re studying your state history, go check out one of the landforms mentioned in the text. Marine biology students can take a trip to the touch tank or aquarium, and anatomy and physiology students can get up close and personal with cadavers at the morgue or local college. If it’s math you're trying to make sense of, spend half a day with a builder and see how geometry is used, or talk with a structural engineer about how they figure out the load of a structure.

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Make It a Game

Poring over pages of study guides and notes for hours can be mind-numbing and ineffective. Try using a mnemonic device, which is a tool to help remember facts or a large amount of information. It can be a song, rhyme, acronym, image, or a phrase to help remember a list of facts in a certain order. If you’re reading a novel for English class, prepare a meal the characters eat or act out the Shakespearean play you're trying to make sense of. Study for science or world language using vocabulary bingo, or test your math facts with a game of “truth or dare” or math baseball. For extra credit, teach someone the topic you’re studying. Choose a friend, your mom, or a sibling who doesn't know the topic you’re studying and teach them how to do it. Talking through what you learned helps the information stick and you can make sure you understand the concepts.

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Study With a Buddy

 Getting together with a friend or a group of classmates can help you learn new study techniques while still getting a few laughs in. Try having a debate about a topic you're trying to learn. Pick one person and each of you choose a side to argue. If you have a group, they can weigh-in with comments and vote on the winner. With a larger group, you can test each ​other's knowledge by making quizzes, playing trivia, and creating true or false mini-tests. If your group likes to move around, have everyone stand in a circle with one person in the middle (they have the ball). The person in the middle explains a concept from the material you just learned, for example, the Vietnam War. They throw the ball to another person, who moves to the center and shares something they learned. Continue until each person completes a turn.

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Break it Up

Plan scheduled study breaks every hour and take part in an activity you enjoy. Go for a quick walk, read a chapter in your favorite book, talk with a friend, watch a short video, or eat a snack. If one hour is too long, go for 20-25 minutes and then take a short five-minute break. Before you take a break, write down what you learned during your study time and add to this list each time you take a break.

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Use Music

It’s no secret that music helps with focus, concentration, and creativity. Whether you’re listening to tunes while studying or coming up with your own songs to improve recall of facts, dates, and figures, music makes a difference. By activating both the left and right brain at the same time, music maximizes learning and improves memory.

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Leave the House

Sometimes a change in location can keep things fresh and exciting. If the weather is nice, head to a park or the beach. Study at your favorite coffee shop or bookstore. If you’re a mover and a shaker, you might want to try exercising to improve memory and thinking skills. Hit the pavement for a run and listen to a podcast that covers the topic you’re studying, or grab a friend and quiz each other while you run. Some of your best thoughts and moments of clarity come when you're moving your body.

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There's an App for That

Not only has technology improved how we produce work, it has also made it possible to dive deeper into learning complex topics and information. Online courses, apps, and other software can help you practice what you’re studying and make it fun at the same time.

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Your Citation
Lindberg, Sara. "8 Ways to Make Studying More Fun." ThoughtCo, Aug. 7, 2017, thoughtco.com/ways-to-make-studying-more-fun-4147145. Lindberg, Sara. (2017, August 7). 8 Ways to Make Studying More Fun. Retrieved from https://www.thoughtco.com/ways-to-make-studying-more-fun-4147145 Lindberg, Sara. "8 Ways to Make Studying More Fun." ThoughtCo. https://www.thoughtco.com/ways-to-make-studying-more-fun-4147145 (accessed March 18, 2018).