October 20, 2014
Ask Ally

Dear Ally, OMG. I am having the worst week ever. My soccer coach threatened to take me off the team, even though he earlier told me that I was one of the best players! Apparently, I haven’t been getting the best grades, and I really need help on how to improve them so I can keep playing soccer! I desperately need your help! —Sporty But Struggling

Dear Sporty But Struggling,

My friend was going through the exact same thing just a little while ago. Not to fear—I helped her out with some advice, and she is already improving and even made honor roll!

  1. First things first, you have to set yourself up for success.Have a good mindset toward school and class—in addition to soccer. Even though juggling a sport and school at the same time may be tricky, it is important to have a positive attitude throughout because that will allow you to stay focused in class and get a good grasp on what you are learning.
  2. Take notes and ask questions. Notes are actually a great way to help you improve your grades. They act as study guides and can remind you what you did in class even if you are exhausted after soccer practice.
  3. Ask for help. To better understand what you are learning in class, be sure to raise your hand and ask questions to clarify whatever you don’t quite understand. This will really help you comprehend concepts that you just don’t get the first time your teacher explains them to the class. And if you’re nervous about asking in front of the class (you shouldn’t be!), you can also talk to your teacher outside of class to get extra help. Your teachers are a resource and usually want to help their students as much as possible, so make use of that!
  4. Start studying immediately! It might be superhard, but by not procrastinating or waiting till the last day to study, you are giving your mind so much more time and energy to understand what you are learning. It is better to study for at least twenty minutes each day before the test instead of cramming the night before a test! Go over notes and flash cards to study.
  5. Start or join a study group! In addition to being superfun, study groups can help you so much by allowing you to learn through your friends, especially if you don’t exactly understand a concept that your teacher taught you. Just like in soccer, you can use your “team,” or study group, to help you reach your goal of acing a test.

Good luck! Try to stay focused and try all these methods, and I’m sure you will have a better time at school!

Au Revoir for Now,

Ally

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