It’s back to school time! Sticky notes are one of my favorite tools for planning. While I may not be in school or university anymore, here are the 5 ways I used sticky notes to organize my planner and make studying a bit easier.
How to use sticky notes in your planner for school or college
To enlarge the screen of the video, click the square icon in the bottom right hand corner of the video (it will say ‘full screen’ when you hover your mouse over the icon).
Links mentioned in the video:
- Colored pens – I shared my favorite black planner pens in this post – most of those pen brands also do colored pens
- Small sticky notes are from Post it Note 3m (they have the biggest variety of colored sticky notes)
- 2" long x 1" high sticky notes are the Aspire Brand
- Target lined sticky notes
- My sister has colored dot stickers in her planner supplies shop
1. Use a sticky note to highlight important things
At the start of each week I would ‘pre-plan’ what I needed to get done on a sticky note by creating a to do list and drawing a checkbox beside it. Once I listed out everything that needed to get done, I used smaller sticky notes to allocate the tasks, assignments, homework, etc. to each day.
Using color-coded sticky notes helped maintain a balance between personal and school life, and also so you aren’t cramming and leaving things to the last minute. If you’d found that you’d allocated too much to one day, you can just peel the sticky note and reallocate it to another day.
2. Use a sticky note to track the progress of assignments
Because assignments can take multiple weekly to complete, I would write a list of the steps needed to finish it. But I grew tired flicking back and forth to other sections of my planner, so opted to use a sticky note instead as it can be moved from week to week. On the sticky note I keep track of all the tasks needed to complete an assignment from start to finish such as:
- Choose topic
- Introduction & conclusion
- Write body of essay
- In-text referencing & Reference list
- Finalise ready to submit
I also liked to put the estimated time to complete each step which helps when scheduling tasks in your planner.
3. Use a sticky note to create a weekly summary
I would do this towards the end of the semester when assessment started piling up. I recommend a large sticky note for the this such as the Keji sticky note brand in the 3" x 5" size (they’re only a couple of dollars at Officeworks, I've also seen lined ones at Target). Post it Note also have large lined sticky notes although they're quite expensive!
I would divide my sticky note in 3 sections:
- Assessment (and when the assessment is due)
Related post: Color coded monthly meal planning using sticky notes
4. Homework & Study
In the homework section I’d list out all of the chapter review questions, readings etc. and draw a square checkbox beside it.
To keep track of what homework I’d started, finished and still needed to do, I would draw a diagonal line through half the checkbox when I'd finished half the homework, and another diagonal line (to form an x) when the homework for that subject was complete.
In much the same way as the homework tracking, I’d draw a checkbox to keep track of my understanding of each topic for exam prep. If the box was half colored I had an ok understanding (but still needed to do some more study). If the box was fully colored in then I had that topic nailed and was ready for the exam.
As a starting point for study, I would usually move the sticky note that was the previous week's 'homework' to the study section of the following week.
Use a separate sticky note for each assessment and place it on the day it is due. Do this first, before you add anything else to the page - that way you can see what you should prioritise studying first.
One of the reasons I recommend using sticky notes (for any type of planner) is because they can be rearranged depending on what you have going on that week. You could use the Frixion erasable pens but sticky notes are quicker - especially when you're pre-planning the week.
Yellow versus colored sticky notes
My personal preference is colored sticky notes. They stand out more, especially if you have a lot of subjects.
On the other hand, yellow sticky notes are cheaper, and if you like using colored pens you can see the ink, whereas if you use colored sticky notes you can really only use black pen.
As for color coding, I recommend using:
- 1 color for personal stuff e.g. cleaning, reminders etc.
- 1 color for each subject
- 1 color for your work hours
- You could also use another color for exams to make them stand out in your planner, or instead of different colors for each subject, different colors for homework, assignments, speeches, group assignments and exams
If you can't find sticky notes in the size you need to suit the planner that you're using, you can always cut them to size.
My favorite sticky notes are:
- Small sticky notes are from Post it Note 3M (they have the biggest variety of colored sticky notes)
- 2 x 2" colored sticky notes (Post it Note 3M brand)
- 2" long x 1" high sticky notes (Aspire Brand)
- Target lined sticky notes
If you don't want to pay for lined sticky notes, place the sticky note over a page with lined paper and use those as a guide instead.
Liked this post? Pin It!
We all keep to do lists - but are you writing your to do list the right way?50 tips for writing a better to do list1. Color code.Some methods: By categoryBy estimated time to complete the taskMust do, should do and if I have timePerson responsible for the taskDue dates e.g. due in the next fortnight, [...]
There are lots of cute notepads out there for weekly planning, but most of them are too simple for my liking, so when I stumbled across this one at Officeworks I couldn't resist buying it! :)I used it for week 26 of the 52 planners in 52 weeks challenge.Using a weekly planner notepadWhat I liked [...]
Sticky notes are fast becoming my favorite way to meal plan!Why I use sticky notes for meal planning Sticky notes are re-usable so you can write the meal once, and then just peel and re-stick without having to re-write the same meals over and over againFlexible planning method - if plans change, just peel and re-stick, [...]
If you're a perfectionist like me, you probably use whiteout / correction tape to correct spelling mistakes, smudges etc. when planning. While there is the option of liquid whiteout, I find it messy, hard to get the whiteout out of the tube, it's also more expensive and never seems to last very long.I use whiteout [...]
How to use Planoly to schedule Instagram posts from your computer (plus free printable list of 100 hashtags for planner addicts!)
If you're a fellow blogger or Etsy seller, or just someone that likes posting on Instagram a lot, one of the tools that has made the process so much easier is Planoly.I joined Instagram last year and wasn’t having much luck with engagement and growing my followers. I never used to post on Instagram because [...]
For week 25 of the 52 Planners in 52 Weeks challenge I opted to use the Erin Condren Teacher Planner. I'm not a teacher but I was drawn to the layout of the lesson planning pages. With a couple of modifications it turned it into of my favorite weekly spreads to date!Setting up the weekThis [...]
For week 23 of the 52 planners in 52 weeks challenge, I wanted to try one of the Limelife Planner layouts. Given that the planners are rather expensive to begin with, plus shipping to Australia where I live (which is never cheap), I was pleased to find they have free downloads on their website!Related: Planner [...]
Typo is an Aussie stationery store – to be honest, it’s a bit hit and miss. Their pens are nice and they have some nice notebooks but the rest of the stuff in the shop is a bit of a junky miss-match of things.They were having a clearance sale on some pens (for just $1) [...]
I've been trying to find lesser known planners to try for the 52 planners in 52 weeks challenge. I stumbled across the Ashley Shelly planner when I was searching for a horizontal planner layout. I wanted to try something different from the usual lined layout.Related: Planners you probably haven't heard of (but will want to [...]