The note-taking hall of fame

Photo of colorful notes of Kikani Libada ‘21. Photo by Kikani Libada.

Kikani Libada

Photo of colorful notes of Kikani Libada ‘21. Photo by Kikani Libada.

In every Urban classroom there’s at least one student whose notes could be framed in gold and placed on the wall of a museum. From review sheets for a math final to notes from a history class, notes are some of the most important aspects of learning at any school—particularly at Urban, where students are expected to be independent and diligent learners. Here are some images of Urban’s elite notetakers’ best work along with some of their advice for achieving cohesive and organized notes. Despite the clear talent these notetakers possess, not everyone needs to take such detailed notes to be a good student—these are simply some tips and tricks for you to consider!

Jack Kampmann ‘20

One of my favorite things I do for note taking is making small keys of information for diagrams, whether that be color coding, symbols etc. This helps jog your memory when you refer back to your work!

I try to summarize each concept briefly by adding its definition but also writing in a solution to demonstrate how the concepts can be applied.

Sassy Mosley-Wise ‘20

I use college ruled paper because the line spacing is thinner.

Writing down what people say and talk about in the class is great because that’s what’s most important.

I also star the most important concepts to look back at later.

Lizzy Hayashi ’20

I think it’s really important to put the week and day that I’m taking the notes on at the top of the page.

I try to use different colors to make certain things stand out, and also to keep me focused on taking notes. I also don’t try and write down everything the teacher says in my notes, because that’s overwhelming.

I write what I think is important and go back to the board notes if I think I’m  missing something.

Kikani Libada ’21

If you want to try making a personal planner or just want to try this system out, go for it! And it doesn’t need to look pretty because it’s there to help you with remembering things not to just look nice.

Your personal planner doesn’t need to look pretty, because it’s there to help you with things, not to just look nice.