“It was the first day of the Easter holidays and Hermione, as was her custom, had spent a large part of the day drawing up study schedules for the three of them. Harry and Ron had let her do it– it was easier than arguing with her and, in any case, they might prove useful.”–Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
1. Start Studying Early
Don’t procrastinate. Avoid the Harry and Ron technique of waiting to do homework until midnight the day before it’s due. Be like Hermione by starting homework assignments the day you get them. Start preparing for essays well before the due date. Leave time to ask questions and go over difficult material you didn’t understand the first time.
“Well, write in your homework planner then!” said Hermione encouragingly. “So you don’t forget!” Harry and Ron exchanged looks as he reached into his bag, withdrew the planner and opened it tentatively. “Don’t leave it till later, you big second-rater!” chided the book.–Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
2. Keep a Schedule
Making a study schedule is classic Hermione. She plans her weeks with class lectures, breaks, study time, homework time, and fun time. Plan ahead what needs to be done and when, that way you aren’t putting off assignments that will take more time than you’ve allotted. Even with a busy schedule of brewing polyjuice potion or knitting hats for the house elves, Hermione made time for it all by scheduling her tasks.
3. Study with Friends
Friends can be your, well, best friends, when it comes to studying. If you’ve got a friend in the same class, agree to meet for a study session to quiz each other. Or, agree to sit quietly together while each working on your own tasks. Having that accountability buddy will make you more inclined to keep to your study schedule and stay focused. Hopefully, you’ll even be able to teach each other something. Hermione does an excellent job teaching Harry and Ron, and it helps her cement the information in her brain even more. Volunteer to correct your friend’s homework or offer suggestions for improvements.
“You know,” said Ron, whose hair was on end because of all the times he had run his fingers through it in frustration, “I think it’s back to the old Divination standby.”
“What–make it up?”–Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire
4. Participate in Class
Hermione’s hand was in the air so often during classes that I’m not sure how she ever took notes! She was incredibly attentive and volunteered answers left and right. More importantly, she asked questions. She wanted to know more and wasn’t shy about getting the answers. Make yourself known as the student who participates and you’ll have no problem getting an A in the class.
5. Read Assigned Material Before Class
Hermione is known for reading the entire textbook before even attending the class. While you probably don’t need to read the whole thing, just make sure to read the corresponding sections. You’ll come to class with an idea of the topic at hand and you’ll be ready to ask questions to clarify confusing information.
“He and Ron spent much of Sunday catching up with all their homework again, and althought this could hardly be called fun, the last burst of autumn sunshine persisted, so rather than sitting hunched over tables in the common room, they took their work outside and lounged in the shade of a large beech tree on the edge of the lake.”-Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix
6. Study Regularly
There’s nothing worse than getting to the weekend and realizing you have a week’s worth of work to do in two days. Spread out your study sessions over the whole week. A little here, a little there. It’ll keep you sane and also prevents mass study sessions that leave you too tired to go to class on Monday.
7. Read for Fun
I know, I know. You’ve already got enough to read and study without doing more for fun. But there are tremendous benefits to reading for leisure. First, you’ll be practicing studying and learning. You’ll also be educating yourself on a broad range of subjects that you’ll find to help you make connections between topics. A well-read person is a successful person. Make a little time to read more. You might even find the answer to what Fluffy is guarding in your ‘light’ reading.
8. Complete All Assignements
While some homework assignments are graded, others are not. Do them anyway. Complete all assignments on time and use them as real practice. Often, exam questions are based on homework or in-class examples.
“The third years emerged from Transfiguration at lunchtime on Monday, limp and ashen-faced, comparing results and bemoaning the difficulty of the tasks they had been set, which had included turning a teapot into a tortoise.”–Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban
9. Practice Like it’s the Exam
Study like you are taking the exam. Practice questions that you know will be on the exam and quiz yourself to get a true sense of your current knowledge. When you practice certain exam styles, you gain confidence in that particular style. Essay questions are best practiced by writing essays for example.
10. Find Courses You Love
Hermione loves basically every class (except Divinations). But you might not. Find the elective courses you’re really interested in during high school. Pick a college major you are genuinely passionate about. Find a course that piques your curiosity. If you want to learn something because you like it, you’ll learn it without any trouble.
“I hope you’re pleased with yourselves. We could all have been killed–or worse, expelled. Now, if you don’t mind, I’m going to bed.”-Hermione Granger, Harry Potter and the Socerer’s Stone