Because it involves lots of algebraic and trigonometric computations, Calculus is one of the most difficult branches of Math. If they could, students would have liked to avoid this subject altogether. Calculus, however, is often unavoidable. If you are about to take Calculus, you must understand that the best thing to do is to prepare yourself for the subject. Below are some tips.
- Stay focused. Focus is very important in learning Calculus. Without which, it is nearly impossible to master the subject. Sometimes, however, focusing is a very challenging to do, whether you are in class or doing your homework alone in your room. If you are having difficulty with focusing, try doing some exercises until you can keep your mind on the subject without wandering after every few seconds.
- Never skip a class. Yes, attendance is of utmost importance. A new lesson is introduced each day, which is usually connected to the previous and future lessons. Remember, Calculus lessons are intertwined which is why missing just one class will get you so far behind. If you need to skip a class, make sure to make up by borrowing notes from a classmate or asking someone to fill you in on the lesson. Do not go to class without studying the previous lesson; otherwise, you won’t fully understand the present.
- Practice a lot. You can’t master the concepts behind Calculus without practicing them over and over. Remember, practice establishes familiarity, and familiarity leads to mastery. Practicing shouldn’t only be done in class but should also extend outside of the school. It will be best if you spend at least two hours of self-studying and work on different problems everyday. Take this time to spot and strengthen your weak points so that you can perform better in class and during exams.
- Join a study group. Better yet, build one on yourself. Meet with some of your classmates who share the same goal to do well in Calculus. It doesn’t have to be a big group. You can meet with two to three people on a regular basis to review what you have learned from school. You can do some solving exercises or study for an exam. Meeting with a study group gives you an opportunity to learn without being exposed to the innate pressure of a classroom.
- Make notes. Have a big notebook where you will write all the techniques, tips, and strategies your teacher will give you. Make sure to review the notes when you get home and apply them to the problems you are solving on your own.
- Have supplementary references and resources. Your textbooks will bring you far along, especially if you study them diligently. But if you find that your textbooks are not enough, then by all means get additional resources. Ask your teacher for recommendations and try to look Calculus materials in your library. You can also search the Internet.
Study very well. Unless you have some kind of a super power, you will never get through Calculus without studying long and hard. Take advantage of all the assistance that you can get from your teacher, classmates, books, and other resource materials. And, make sure to have a structured study schedule.