Congratulations, your first (probably very intense) year of the IB is behind you. You have reached the halfway mark! It is more than likely that you now have a long summer break ahead of you. These weeks can fly by so quickly that you miss the opportunity to prepare for the following year. Considering how difficult the second year of the IB can be, we suggest you use this break (somewhat) productively! Here are some tips on how you can make that happen and optimise your summer revision.
Begin Your Summer Revision by Actually Relaxing
While staying on top of your game during this break is vital, it is also important to realise that relaxing plays a key role. A few weeks ago, we covered how to destress correctly in detail. Yes, it is possible to relax in the “wrong” way! Set aside time to enjoy that your end-of-year exams are behind you, but also be vary, or you might fall into a slump.
Start Getting Your Notes and Papers in Order
You will have accumulated a metric ton of loose papers and notes throughout the last year. Do your future self a future, and try to organise them by subjects & sub-topics. If you can hardly decipher some of your notes, you should probably rewrite them, as that is also good practice. Set a day aside and get to it! Start by putting some of your favourite music on in the background. Then, fetch some folders and try to systematise all the stragglers. All notes deserve a home!
Summer CAS – Best CAS
The summer is the time to do the bulk of your CAS work. And it could not be easier. You are probably already looking at doing some fun activities in the summer, so see if you can make them CAS! Want to go rowing with your friends? That’s perfect CAS. Want to volunteer at a local animal shelter? You guessed it, that’s CAS. Now that you do not have school from early morning to the afternoon, your days will be much freer to tackle that CAS project.
Structure Your Summer Revision
Almost everyone knows that they should be revising over their break. The issue is that few people know how. The key is structure. You have covered many topics in your first year, so to give your brain a chance to remember some of them, revision is crucial.
I suggest you look at the sub-topics you have covered in every subject and start colour coding them by how well you know them. Red for not at all, yellow for somewhat and green for “a-ok”.
Now dedicate some days to topics, prioritising the red ones more than the others. After revision for a specific topic, re-evaluate your colour coding – maybe you can call it yellow now! Then leave for at least a week and revisit it to turn it green.
It is helpful to keep a calendar for this kind of revision. While analogue calendars are satisfying, online calendars also have certain advantages. You can, for example, rearrange which subjects you revise on which days a lot simpler using their drag-and-drop features. Google calendar is excellent for this.
We also wholeheartedly recommend our tutors over the summer. They will help you stay on track and can keep you accountable during your summer revision. They are also experts in revision and can help you find a good structure. So, do yourself a favour and check them out here. For some revision-relevant reading, check out our other blog posts here.