You have just started learning physics at Junior College.
Since you were successful in grabbing the grade you so wanted. Also, you and your parents believe that the result so rightfully was reflexive of your talent, you are literally on top of the world and feeling invincible. You have got yourself admitted and started the new chapter in your life.
Your emotions are all over, and everything about the campus, the cute coeds, the Junior College curriculum, even the complete list of texts look shiny and promising and seems like full of exciting future adventures.
Soon the classes have started to take place. After a couple of sittings, feelings of unease have started to surface. Suddenly your inflated pride took a hit, and your invincible feel for the world began waning. You even found yourself questioning the wisdom of taking Physics. Believe me when I say this – I also asked the whole practice of pointless studying for getting educated. So, we all have been there and know what we are going through. But like me, thousands of others have overcome this and walked boldly towards life.
But things won’t change on their own. You need to be proactive – you need to chase your problems and face them head-on. Everybody has a unique way of dealing with things, and I am sure you will develop yours as well. Just don’t take too long.
And in the meantime, have a look at my seven tips for surviving Physics in Junior College.
Draw – Whenever You Get The Chance:
Let’s start with my favorite thing to do – drawing – whenever you get the chance. For questions dealing with dynamics and natural forces, draw diagrams. If you haven’t done that before, in secondary schools, now is the best time to start loving it.
How will the diagrams help you get to the core? Let’s see how. When you can draw any real resemblance to the forces working on the body, it will allow you to compartmentalize the troops to its elemental components. So it would be something that you can easily relate to the problematic texts you have been given to get by heart. For the question where bodies are connected, draw one visible artwork where all the individual frames can be seen acting as one large entity.
It will enable you to study the bulk motion authenticated by the large connected body. After realizing the movement of the significant body by the diagram you have drawn in, you can program the mutual interaction of the smaller organizations with one another. My Physics teacher would always want me to break down the forces into parallel and perpendicular surfaces as the bodies usually are seen moving parallel to the slope.
You get the idea. Above I have just mentioned how you can deal with one assortment of problems by drawing diagrams. You can improvise and also take help from your teachers on how you visualize other issues with your drawing.
Regarding this idea, I also want to let you know that the teachers employed by JC Physics Tuition in Singapore and IP Tuition in Singapore regularly show the students how to plot probable theories on a piece of paper and use the diagram to get to the core of the problem.
Make Friends With Calculus:
You should have clear understandings of various derivatives and integrals of specific quantities.
Renowned physicist Richard Feynman once said that “(calculus) is the language God talks.”
When you take stock about your H2 Physics through your primary texts, study materials, tuition notes, etc., you would be amazed to find that the If you take stock of your H2 physics tuition notes and school materials, differentiation and integration are used by most topics. The irony is that you wouldn’t be expected to integrate or differentiate. It is just a presumption that you have clear understandings of what the results of integrating and differentiating signifies. Calculus can establish links between displacement, velocity, and acceleration time graphs. So it would be a piece of cake for you to derive the rest of the problem if you are just given the proper initial conditions.
So, the sooner you are in close friendships with calculus, the better will be Physics at treating you right.
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Attend The Classes:
Let’s leave the technicalities and talk about the good old ways for dealing with tough nuts; for you, this would be the Physics curriculum of junior college.
The point above is anything but unique but, at the same time, screamingly distinct. I simply can repeat it, attend the classes, and attend them regularly.
You may be murmuring about having many resources at your disposal – primary texts, study materials, your tuition notes, and of course, there is the internet, with the collective wisdom humanity ever gathered. But you still need to get there.
Let me emphasize the point a bit. The primary texts contain everything there is to know about different topics. Similarly, the study materials and the internet will also throw everything they have at you. But you would be judged in the exam about only the most essential bits of any particular chapter. So, the teachers in the class – be it the professors or professional teachers employed by the tuition centers like JC Physics Tuition in Singapore and IP Tuition in Singapore would be discussing the things that matter most.
Another excellent plus point of attending classes regularly is any good instructor will know more than one way to explain things to you. So, if you have difficulties in getting the gist of the topic described in one direction, you would surely get the chance to get it in another way just by listening to the teachers.
Don’t Hesitate To Ask:
You will be in situations where you wouldn’t be able to get the meaning of the teacher. Most pupils would assume that at home, they would deal with the problem as he or she would have access to resources at their disposal. Also, the comfort of studying in your reading room would make it easier. And most would be wrong.
There is a good chance that the texts would be even more cryptic than the words of your teacher. The study material or tuition notes might not answer all the relevant queries that might arise. And finally, you should keep it in mind that teachers are getting paid to answer all and every question you can think of asking regarding – well – almost anything.
As a teacher, let me share a teachers’ secret with you – teachers love items from the students. It means that they are delivering in the right way; otherwise, no student would have thought about clearing the concept by asking questions. Either that or they simply shut them down by stopping bothering.
Another issue that prevents the students from asking questions is that they think they are wasting other pupil’s precious time; on the contrary, they are doing a service to all the others by asking questions. And for the love of God Almighty, never think that others might perceive you as a dumb; instead, they would be thanking you in quiet contemplation.
Do the Homework
Another ‘too obvious to even mention’ idea is doing homework and doing it regularly. And I am repeating it – do homework usually regardless of it being with or without grades.
Bear with me for sharing a teachers’ insider joke – it goes like this – “I teach for free. They pay me to grade.”
Teachers don’t assign homework for some cheap thrill. For teachers, checking homework is a form of drudgery to make them miserable. But still, teachers love to assign homework. Why do you think teachers do that? The reason is simple. The only way to learn science is by doing it, which by definition, transpires solving problems by yourself, which is why homework was designed in the first place.
Homework is tedious, confusing, hard, drab, and, finally, very demanding. Well, you should remember that that’s the point of homework. Let me give you the analogy of Rhett Allain about homework and working out:
“Confusion is the sweat of learning. You don’t get in shape by reading the instruction booklet for a Stairmaster; you have to get on the damn thing and do the reps, getting sweaty and tired in the process.”
Similarly, homework is the intellectual working out – you need to do them to get better in the actual thing. And as there are ways to make working out enjoyable, you can also make your homework fun.
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Get to Know Your Fellow Students
If you’re not involved in home-schooling, the probability is you will have classmates taking classes with you. So, try to be friends with them and inspire them to spend time together by studying and completing homework together.
It might feel daunting at first that you are inspiring your fellow students to spend the few little spare time you’ve got in studying. Some obviously will rebuff. But you sure can make a friend or two, and all of you will have someone to have your back. If you miss class for some unforeseen misfortune, you will have someone to get the lecture notes from; you can tackle homework together and, most importantly, lay bare your shortages in the concept you somehow missed from the lecture.
Believe me when I say this – you will learn a lot more about the topic when and if you try to teach about it to someone else.
Be an Expert In Human Connection:
Contrary to the stereotypical conception, science is successful communication as well, especially when you are learning.
When you are in the class, taking lecture notes or answering anything from the teacher or the peers – make sure whatever you do, you can deliver it the way you are seeing. In simple terms, be an expert in communicating with others. This might seem a bit too far-fetched that good communication ability can help in getting good grades.
Think it like this way – the teacher would have difficulties in giving you good grades if he doesn’t understand what you are trying to express. The idea here is if you can get simple messages across clearly, you will be able to do it for the difficult ones as well.
Another aspect of excellent communication skills is that you will not only be good at expressing yourself but also won’t have any problems getting the meaning of what you are being told. So, it will start with the endeavor of becoming successful in communicating with others.
There you go, my seven tips on how to survive Physics in Junior College. I hope you will not only survive but also will get through your studies with flying colors.
Calvin P. Floyd has over six years of experience in the field of Education. He specializes writing articles on Education-related topics on his blog. He is presently working at physics cafe, a reputable presence in the education industry.