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  (#1 (permalink)) Old
lovekatie Offline
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Unhappy Failed a test? - March 26th 2012, 09:21 PM

Before I begin, I just want to say that I am crazy about getting high grades. I've never gotten below a 96 on a report card, and never below a 97 on a final. I am a freshman at a prep school, so there's a lot of competition. I never get pressured by my parents to get good grades; however, I feel like I need to. Today I took an Alg 2 test and I know I did very bad. I didn't give an answer to a 16 and 10 point question. In that class, the teacher NEVER gives retakes and extra credit isn't allowed. There are only 3 tests a quarter and homework only counts for a mere 50 points. I'm freaking out right now, and I don't know what to do. I know that everybody fails, but I need to bring my grade up to an A and I don't want to go back into class tomorrow and recieve that bad grade when everyone else did fine on a major test. Please don't tell me I'm crazy, I just value academic success.
   
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Re: Failed a test? - March 26th 2012, 10:41 PM

Quote:
Originally Posted by lovekatie View Post
Before I begin, I just want to say that I am crazy about getting high grades. I've never gotten below a 96 on a report card, and never below a 97 on a final. I am a freshman at a prep school, so there's a lot of competition. I never get pressured by my parents to get good grades; however, I feel like I need to. Today I took an Alg 2 test and I know I did very bad. I didn't give an answer to a 16 and 10 point question. In that class, the teacher NEVER gives retakes and extra credit isn't allowed. There are only 3 tests a quarter and homework only counts for a mere 50 points. I'm freaking out right now, and I don't know what to do. I know that everybody fails, but I need to bring my grade up to an A and I don't want to go back into class tomorrow and recieve that bad grade when everyone else did fine on a major test. Please don't tell me I'm crazy, I just value academic success.
First, you're not crazy. I'm going thru nearly the exact same thing with Algebra 1. Only class i don't have an A in. I was doing so poorly in the class (C+) that my Dad insisted that I get a tutor. I didn't want one for two reasons, 1- Competitive private school where I'm an Academic star, thought having a tutor was embarrassing. 2- Tutoring would mean I'd have to give up playing for my travel basketball team until the end of the school year cause of scheduling.

I fought with my Dad for like two weeks about the tutor. Wasn't gonna win that battle, so now I have one. Took a big test on Thursday, and think I got at least a B for the first time all year.

I don't have too much of the pressure of showing up with a bad grade, cause everybody knows I suck at Math. It's not that I don't get it. I just don't like it, so I don't put the time and effort into it that I put into my other classes.
I gotta get a B to make sure I don't have to take Alg in summer school. That would be a disaster on so many levels i don't even want to think about it. I'm lucky in that we do have retakes in this class. I'm gonna wait to see what I got on this last test, and if I did as well as I think I did, i'll ask to retake a couple of the tests from earlier in the semester.

You sound like you have a great support system at home. I do too, so I think you should sit down with your parents and tell em how you're feeling about this. You know they're not gonna put any pressure on you, but they'll have some words of encouragement that you prolly could use right now.

This is the first class I have ever had below a B+ average at any point in the school year since 1st grade. I've finished every year with straight A's. And just like you, I was freaking out about it. But now, my competitive streak has kicked in. Algebra kicked my butt for the very first time, so I got up and I'm ready to fight back.

I may not get an A. But I am not going to summer school. I will not let that happen.

Also think about getting your parents to intervene with the teacher on your behalf. If you've been a star student all this time, and this is your first stumble, maybe the teacher can be persuaded to give you an opportunity to make up the test or part of it. You said you're at a prep school, so if tuition is involved your parents may have some leverage. I know the "I'm paying thousands of dollars a year to this school, so give my kid a break" card is played at my school on occasion

Sorry for the wordy reply, but it really struck close to home. Best of luck, and PM me if you want to. We can keep each other up on how things go for the rest of the year.

Good luck... and All the best

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Re: Failed a test? - March 26th 2012, 11:17 PM

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Originally Posted by lovekatie View Post
and I don't want to go back into class tomorrow and recieve that bad grade when everyone else did fine on a major test...... I just value academic success.
Hun, valuing academic success is a good thing. Making yourself crazy in the process isn't. Besides, what you seem to be implying is that the good grades make you feel better about yourself b/c of how they compare with others performance, it sounds very personal. Perhaps too much so?

The task here is to prepare yourself as best you can and do as well as you can, and learn from it. Try to figure out how you missed those other questions, so next time, you won't. By making this more about you and your personal best (rather than how it compares with everyone else), this can be a learning experience (which is the point), rather than some competitive/control issue. Which it isn't.

Go to class, look at your mistakes, and try to learn from them for next time.


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Re: Failed a test? - March 26th 2012, 11:34 PM

In a third year integrative human physiology course, two days before our big mid-term, the prof showed a copy of an old test with a failing grade (around 45%). It was his mid-term test when he was an undergrad student and he showed it to the class as a way of saying even if we screw up, it's one test, we're not going to be doomed, we can still maintain an A average and learn from our mistakes. I think all students are competitive when it comes to getting the highest grade, which is quite alright, however, you're taking a too personal all-or-none approach in that a high grade (90-95%+) makes you feel great while a low grade makes you feel like shit in a can, no middle-ground. Everyone has a slip-up here and there but the point is to learn from the mistakes by seeing how the correct answers are reached and where you went wrong.


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Re: Failed a test? - March 27th 2012, 04:54 AM

To add to what everyone else has said:

In grade 8 I've failed more assignments than I wish to admit. Part of it was the fact I had crappy unsatisfied teachers, which in turn made me crappy and unsatisfied, and the other part of it was the downward spiral. Once I screwed up I spent so much time obsessing over that, and ended up screwing up the next time. Eventually I realized that really, school is for learning and all I had to do was just that, learn. I went over what I did wrong, and realized rather than me actually being "stupid" my study habits were the issue. I spent too much time obsessing over every detail, and as a result I missed out on the big picture.

Now that I'm dedicated to learning in school, not just getting a grade on a piece of paper, my test scores have actually went up all across the board for Grade 9. You need to make an effort to first fully understand the subject, and work on the areas you don't "get" then bring those up to par with the rest of it. You're truly only as strong as your weakest link, and ignoring what you don't understand won't help.

One bad grade (or several, in my case.) cannot derail you, but it should show you that something you're doing is wrong. Maybe you're too detailed, or too generalized with the way you look at a topic, understanding the problem and then fixing it is the important thing.

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