Academic success at Auckland Grammar School is attained when students achieve to their full potential, regardless of their form class, stream or academic pathway. Defined in these terms, the keys to academic success are, in fact, very simple. They are:
1. To attend school every day
While inevitably there will be instances of absence due to illness and injury, bereavement, sporting commitments or family circumstances, students should only be absent from school when it is absolutely unavoidable. There is a clear correlation between attendance and achievement levels.
Courses are delivered sequentially and knowledge and skills are developed cumulatively. Frequent or regular absences result in students getting behind or having gaps in their knowledge and this is inevitably reflected in their performance in assessments.
2. To work hard in class every period
Students who consistently work with application and focus are likely to achieve their learning objectives and earn the respect and support of their teachers. They will find that their teachers are prepared to ‘go the extra mile’ should they need individual assistance.
It is important to be an active rather than a passive learner in class. Learning involves the generation of synapses in the brain. The more active the learning, the stronger the synapses and thus memory, and the deeper the learning
3. To complete homework every night
Teachers set homework for a variety of reasons: to complete tasks; for students to apply and deepen the knowledge and skills developed in class that day; or to conduct independent learning in the form of research and inquiry. Review of the day’s classwork should be part of your daily homework routine and involves:
- Ensuring you understand the work covered in class and in your notes
- Recording notes accurately in a way that you will understand as you are taking the notes will help you to remember when you revise them. Try to use your own words – if you can’t, it probably means you don’t understand the work
- Memorising: you need to learn the work ‘off by heart’. This is a skill that needs practice – the more you do it, the easier it becomes
- Reviewing daily, weekly, and monthly is the key to transferring information from the short-term to the long-term memory, thus turning it into knowledge
Seeking help with Schoolwork
While most students who approach their schoolwork in the manner outline above will make good academic progress there may be occasions when extra support is required. This is available from a variety of sources. Download a revision timetable that you can fill in yourself to help with your exam preparations or read the Effective Revision Study Booklet.
Annually, the School provides two study and revision programmes delivered by Darren Pereira of Success Integrated. The Study Skills for Success programme combines study skills with motivation and resilience strategies, to give students the tools needed to maximise their academic results. It includes a wide range of study tips and methodologies as well as techniques to develop the important character traits required to apply these skills for optimum success.
Part 1 of the programme is delivered to all Form 3 students early in Term 1. This seminar is timed to help support students as they commence their academic careers at Auckland Grammar School. In addition, all Form 3 parents are offered the opportunity to attend an evening seminar with a focus on Parenting Strategies for Teenage Success.
Part 2 of the programme is delivered to all Form 5 students early in Term 3 as they enter the demanding second half of the academic year leading up to their first set of external examinations in Term 4.