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Crafting the Perfect Page

Amp up your study skills by reading about these different note taking methods!

Being a full time student isn’t easy. Between handling your high school classes, sports, extracurriculars, and MCC courses, things can get very stressful. You can lighten your load and make a class a little more easygoing, simply by taking effective notes. 

There are many different ways to take notes, but I like to use three different specific methods. Within any method of note taking, I use fun colors to make my paper more enjoyable to look at. This tool also helps me to make sure I go back and look at the notes, so I am more productive in class. 

 

Bullet notes:

What are they?

Bullet notes are exactly what they sound like, using bullet points to keep track of the information you are learning. These do not need to be in the form of complete sentences. I recommend bullet notes when you take notes based on an article or textbook. When you read something you think you’ll need to remember, jot it down next to a bullet point so you can reference it later. Bullet notes are very effective when you are taking notes for a test. They help to organize your information clearly and they highlight the key points that you will need to remember most.

How to set up your paper

Start by writing the class and topic at the top of your paper. Next, write down your first subheading within the topic. Finally, begin writing the key details from your source in the format of a bullet point. Write a new subheading every time it is necessary, and build multiple labeled bullet point lists, so your paper doesn’t get unorganized or confusing. 

 

Slide notes:

What are they?

Slide notes are used when the lecture in your class is going off of a slideshow or power point. With these notes, you physically draw the slide on your paper and write the most important points from each slide inside of the box. Sometimes it’s even most beneficial to write down everything on the slide. On the right side of the paper you write notes that align with what is on the slide. 

How to set up your paper

First you draw rectangles on your paper while leaving room on the right for notes. The amount of rectangles is your call, just make sure you make them big enough to write information inside that you can read. Copy the slide either exact or to what you need to remember, and write notes on the side of each box to define that slide to even more detail. 

 

Cornell notes:

What are they?

The Cornell note system captures the most important information and identifies key concepts while having a very structured framework. The paper contains three different sections that all have a different purpose, and make your studying the most effective. This note style is definitely the one I would recommend the most because it contains the most information to help you be successful in class. 

How to set up your paper

Start by dividing your paper into three sections: a narrow left-hand column, a wider right-hand column, and a section on bottom. Label the left-hand column “cues”. This is where you will reduce and recall. Label the right-hand column simply, “notes”. This is where you record as many key points as possible. Lastly, label the bottom section “summary”. This is where you reflect and review the notes you’ve written in the other column. 

After reading about these different note taking methods, I hope you’ve learned a new way that can make your studying and/or test taking more successful. Make sure to reach out and tell us your favorite method on our Instagram account, @mhsaurorantoday!

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About the Contributor
Amaya Wagner, Chief Editor
Amaya is a Senior at MHS. This is her third year writing with the Newspaper team. Along with Newspaper, she is a Co-President of Key Club and a member of NHS. In her free time she enjoys going to concerts, spending time with her friends and family, and listening to music.
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