How to do school homework: how to make notes


Introduction

Homework is a big part of school, obviously. Especially in high school, you sometimes have a teacher who explicitly assigns note taking as homework. This is not the best, as you may have a format other than the one you are comfortable with forced on you, but sometimes that is not the case. Alternatively, your homework is to read a chapter in a book, in which case you'll want to take notes to retain the information. Alternatively, you might need to read a chapter of math in order to understand your assignment. In any case, note taking is a valuable skill that you are going to use throughout your academic career.

Outline Notes from a book

It is important when taking notes to be very organized. One of the best things for this is to build your notes sort of the same way you would write out an outline for an essay. First, have the chapter title on the top, then the sections names underlined, down to smaller headers if the book in question uses though. Once you have the smallest subsection of knowledge the book goes to, it is time to get to work with actual note taking. Write down any main ideas you see, and then write increasingly detailed information that you think you'll need or seems interesting, one indentation more for each additionally detailed note. No need to write in complete sentences, either! For math textbooks, if you have a theorem, axiom, or collar, leave a space, write it down, and leave another space, then continue note taking. These are important, so be sure you can find them readily when you do your homework.

Taking notes from a video or Lecture

Things change a bit when you are taking notes from a lecture or video your instructor has assigned you. When you take notes from a lecture, time is a big factor, so you cannot write everything down. Instead, write down everything on the board- teachers are trained to write the most important things down. You do not need to be as organized here, as you are merely copying all the vital information down- better notes can be taken from a book. In addition, write down any concepts the instructor does not explain in detail but says are important- write a star next to them so you know to look them up later.

Deciding What Notes to take

One of the big parts of writing notes is deciding what is important. Obviously, this includes anything your teacher says, but when reading a book, you want to focus on main ideas. Small factoids are probably not as important, instead focus on why things work they way they do, and causes and effects. This should be enough to get you started on note taking.