How to revise based on your Hogwarts house

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All of my friends can tell me their Hogwarts House. It’s something that goes deep. Rachel is a Hufflepuff. James thinks he’s a Gryffindor but he’s definitely a Slytherin. Laura actually is a Gryffindor (and an absolute lunatic).

Me? I’m a Ravenclaw. How do I know? Well, Pottermore told me:

revision pottermore

But also, I just know.

Clues:

  1. I was Head Girl of my school- twice.
  2. I founded a Debate Team, a Mathletics Club and a Book Club (why didn’t my school already have these things?? What else did they expect me to do with my lunch hours?)
  3. I once told a boy who tried to bully me that it wouldn’t work because I was going to be a Marine Biologist and he was going to be a roadsweeper. I was eight.

Anyway, the other day I was thinking about this deep and primal connection all Harry Potter fans have to their house- and I realised knowing your house could totally define the way you revise. Buckle up, I’m going to lay some truth.

What kind of students are Hufflepuffs?

“Hufflepuffs value hard work, patience, loyalty and fair play.” Pottermore

This one is pretty straightforward. Hufflepuffs are the best kind of student, the kind of student teachers love. Their reward comes from the sense of achievement after plugging away at a hard task until they crack it.

They may not be the fastest to grasp a concept, and it may not go in naturally, but because they have to work to understand things, they tend to stay in the brain much longer and grow much deeper roots.

revision hufflepuff

Photo credit: @hollystevens77

How should Hufflepuffs revise?

Study style: Hufflepuffs thrive with practice- so start planning early and don’t rush your revision. Breathe! Give yourself time.

Whatever topic is being studied, reading it over once and trying to do an exam question on it will just lead to wasted time. Hufflepuffs best engrain their learning by doing five, ten, fifteen practice problems with slightly differing variables before tackling a real one. This may seem like a long way round, but it’s the most reliable of the study styles because the Hufflepuff is building up a strong foundation of solid learning.

The Hufflepuff, in an exam, will then suddenly find they remember loads of stuff they’d forgotten they knew- because they put the hours in months before.

What kind of students are Gryffindors?

“Gryffindor is the house which most values the virtues of courage, bravery and determination.” -Pottermore

Gryffindors thrive under pressure. They love to take a risk and get a thrill out of plunging off the deep end.

This can lead to taking chances with exams- procrastinating and cramming or, in the most extreme of cases, doing absolutely nothing and just hoping for the best- but it doesn’t have to be this way if the Griffindor harnesses their bravery as a positive force.

revision gryffindor

Photo credit: @hollystevens77

How should Gryffindors revise?

Study style: Take risks with your answers- not your learning.

A Gryffindor needs to feel challenged and a bit edgy all the time in order to be at their sharpest. Therefore, Gryffindors need to think deliberately outside the box when preparing for exams. “What would be the most unexpected and risky response I could have to this topic?” would be a great question for a Gryffindor to ask while revising. This leads to really original thought, which means top results, and also gives the Gryffindor the adrenaline rush they crave in their learning.

I’ll give you an example, from Romeo and Juliet. Perhaps Juliet… deserved to die. She blasphemed against God upon first meeting Romeo. She failed to honour her father and her mother. She lied, repeatedly and brazenly. Maybe she had it coming.

Unpopular opinion. Definitely risky. Totally thrilling to write if you can pull it off.

What kind of students are Ravenclaws?

“Ravenclaws prize wit, learning and wisdom.” -Pottermore

Look, Ravenclaws are nerds, so this one should be easy. Ravenclaws love to learn, therefore they love to study, right? Wrong. Ravenclaws love to be fascinated, to be enthralled by a subject. They also love to be the best in the room, and to have the most knowledge, wit and insight into a subject. If they’re not, they switch off.

revision ravenclaw

Photo credit: @hollystevens77

How should Ravenclaws revise?

Study Style: Ravenclaws need to probe deeper than what’s in the books.

Wider reading is essential to holding Ravenclaw interest, and will lead to a more nuanced answer and a much deeper wealth of information to show off.

Ravenclaws shouldn’t be afraid to go down that rabbithole about Japanese 13th-century art, if it informs their RS revision on Christianity. The more niche knowledge a Ravenclaw has, the more that Ravenclaw wants to show it off, and the more knowledge that Ravenclaw craves.

This pairs up nicely with the revision technique of peer-revising; a Ravenclaw will thrive when teaching their friends because they can use all their rare insight to make their subject engaging and they’ll absolutely love the admiration and validation they’ll get from their grateful Hufflepuff friends.

So, Ravenclaws: find the fascinating part of a subject and share your off-the-beaten track information with your friends for maximum long-term retention.

What kind of students are Slytherins?

“Slytherin turns out leaders who are proud, ambitious and cunning.” -Pottermore

Let’s face it, Slytherins are just a little bit cheaty. Slytherins love a shortcut, or a hack, and they love looking like they’ve done brilliantly with no effort at all. This isn’t an ideal combo for revision by any stretch of the imagination- but these traits can also be used to the Slytherin’s advantage.

revision slytherin

Photo credit: @hollystevens77

How should Slytherins revise?

Study Style: Slytherins need competition- because, first and foremost, they hate to lose. Setting up bets, challenges or deadlines with similarly-minded friends (Ravenclaws often make good fellow competitors) will drive a Slytherin to work because they want to win.

A Slytherin’s love of shortcuts also makes memory tricks work really well for them. Little memory jogging devices like mnemonics (eg “30 days has September, April, June and November…” for days in a month) or using the first letters of things in acronyms (My Very Easy Method Just Speeds Up Naming Planets for the solar system) are the most common memory devices, but Slytherins also ought to check out Mind Palaces.

This is a technique where a person imagines a place they know well; for example, their house. Then the areas in that location- the rooms in their house- become the objects of information they need to memorize.

Another example is to use the route to your school, with landmarks along the way becoming the information you need to memorize. You go through a list of words or concepts needing memorization, and associate each word with one of your locations.

Then when you need them back, you just “go” to that place in your mind and everything’s there. It’s the most Slytherin-y trick ever (that evil guy in Sherlock does it and he’s definitely a Slytherin) and also great for visual learners.

revision timetable hogwarts

Photo credit: @mylifejournalized

Want to skip all the planning, with an app that creates your revision timetable for you?

As always, if you want to skip all this work, just use Adapt! Adapt is a free revision timetable app coming this year.

With Adapt, all you have to do is tell us your subjects/exam boards and any pre-existing commitments, and Adapt will create a perfect revision plan for you. We have teacher-written topic lists that cover your entire syllabus, and we know your exam dates.

Beyond that, Adapt updates automatically- if you miss a topic, it simply reschedules it for another day, so you can be sure that you’ll get everything done by exam day without the guilt, stress, or countless hours of planning!

Sign up to the Adapt waitlist

Meet the team behind Adapt

Become an ‘Early Adapter’

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