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Take care of yourselves during this busy time of year​

SHHS News - ​12/3/14

As we head into the last four weeks of the semester and buckle down through Winter Break and finals, the faculty and staff of Smoky Hill wants to remind our community to take a few minutes to take care of yourselves during this busy time.  

Stress from studying, holiday shopping, and the winter doldrums can quickly add up during this season. Here are some ways to keep yourself grounded.

Study tips (from

Time Management

Do not wait until the last minute to study. Cramming and pulling an all-nighter right before the test is not an effective way of studying. Since you likely have several different subjects to be tested on, create a balanced study plan so that each subject receives its fair amount of study.

Where you study is important

If you are trying to study in a place with a lot of distractions you will not likely digest the material you are reading. It is best to find a quiet location away from central gathering places, televisions and computers. The library, a study nook, or a quiet coffee house are good places to study. For most people, sitting up at a table or desk is preferable, as you can likely hold your concentration better than when laying down in bed to read.

Consider joining a study group for at least part of your studying. We retain 70% of what we talk about with others, but only 10% of what we read.

Bring only what you need

Bring just the material you will be working on for that particular study session (notes, pencil, textbook, extra paper). Cell phones, laptops, etc can be distracting as you are tempted to check email, answer texts or surf Facebook. A recent study found that music may help students focus better on their studies, so if it helps you, bring along an iPod with headphones.

Outline your notes

While taking notes in class, you may find that they are not as neatly written as you scramble to keep up with the instructor. Rewrite your notes or put them into outline form. This will help you break down the larger concepts into its basic components, helping you understand the material better.

Approach studying with a positive attitude

If you are distracted by negative thoughts, you will not study effectively. Remind yourself of your skills and abilities, not your obstacles. Avoid catastrophic thinking such as “No matter how hard I study, I am going to blow this test.” And never compare yourself to others. Some people are simply better test-takers than others. Just do your best.

Take frequent breaks and reward yourself for sticking to a schedule

Breaks are important during massive study sessions. Be sure to get up and move around at least once an hour – the activity and short distraction might actually help you focus and be more productive.

Before the test

Be sure to get a good night’s sleep before the big test, and every night. Wake up a little early so you can be sure you bring everything you might need (pencils, paper, etc.) – or set them out the night before. Eat a good breakfast or substantial snack so hunger does not get in the way of your focus.  

Take a break:

The Smoky Hill community has some great events for you to attend as a family in the next few weeks.  


Tues, Dec. 2 - Boys Basketball at Arvada West @ 7:00 pm

Wed, Dec. 3 - Girls Basketball at Columbine @ 7:30 pm

Thurs, Dec. 4 - Wrestling vs. Eaglecrest @ 7:00 pm - East Gym

Fri, Dec. 5 - Cheers & Poms State Competition at Denver Coliseum

Sat, Dec. 6 - Girls Swimming vs. Denver East @ 10:00 am - SH Pool

Tues, Dec. 9 - Boys Basketball at Thunder Ridge @ 7:00 pm

Thurs, Dec. 11 - Girls Swimming at Cherokee Trail @ 4:30 pm

Thurs, Dec. 11 - Band Concert @ 7:15 pm - Auditorium

Fri, Dec. 12 - Improv @ 7:!5 pm - Cafeteria

Beat the winter blahs (from

Sleep well - Make sure you wake up at the time same every day, including weekends. Doing so will keep your body’s internal clock in sync.

Let the light in - Expose yourself to as much sunlight as possible by opening your blinds at home and making sure that your work space has natural or bright light.

Control your cravings - Eat a balanced diet while limiting the amount of carbohydrates you are eating. Carbohydrates can provide a short-term energy boost but leave you feeling worse later in the day.

Embrace an exercise routine - Exercise is not only good for your physical health, but also helps relieve the stress and anxiety that can complicate the winter blahs. Yoga and Pilates type classes are a good way to relax and exercise at the same time.

Learn to manage your stress - Take time to relax each day and try to manage your stress so it doesn’t lead to depression and overeating. Make it a point to stay connected to people who are important to you, as they will help you remain calm and happy.  

Together, lets make is a great end of first semester!

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