Should High School Students Take Notes?

High school doesn’t always seem like a big deal for the average teen simply because they’re still kids who are yet to witness the full extent of the world.

If you’re a high school student reading this, I don’t mean to undermine you, I’m simply speaking as someone who has gone through the various stages of  life and is now responsible for themselves.

Now that we have that out of the way, this article discusses whether or not it’s necessary for high school students to take notes, because this has been a popular subject among high school teachers over the years.

With that said, Should high school students take notes?

High school students should take notes to not only improve their focus but to also prepare them for university and college. It may seem like a small deal but note taking is the training a high school student needs to set the tone for further education and any work that will demand concentration, focus and the ability to observe, listen and take notes.

Now that we have that out of the way let me explain some more reasons why every high school students should take notes and why they should be encouraged to do so.

Referencing material

One of the reasons I encourage anyone that is in high school to take notes is because notes can serve as reference material when you need them. In some situations you may find it easier to recall things that you learnt in a class simply because you wrote it down. Those notes give your memory the reference points from which it can draw the information you could have otherwise forgotten.

Notes are not only meant to help you at the time of writing them, they are meant to take you back to the place you took them from and this can make you a very effective student in times where recollection is all you can rely on.

The average high school student doesn’t take notes because they are lazy to do it, if you want to academically perform better than them. You have to do what they’re not willing to do.

One of those things is the simple act of taking notes.

Higher education prep

In universities and colleges, your teachers expect you to be mature and they won’t really spoon-feed you like a high school teacher will. With this in mind, you have to find a way to be attentive enough to learn.

Note taking is often employed by college and university students because in most cases the lecturer may not even provide class notes. They may want to see effort from the student and their ability to research and look into topics on their own.

If you are already a good note taker in high school, you’ll find it much easier to do as you continue to do it. This will make you more than ready for college or university.

So, think long-term.

Work prep

Not all students go to college immediately after leaving high school, some may take jobs and being a solid note taker can be helpful because the student can take down instructions, operations and any other information that could help them do the job better.

Therefore, note taking is not only good training for formal higher education; it is also training for life opportunities that may present themselves.

Concentration and focus

As I’ve already mentioned, taking notes improves your ability to concentrate and focus because you won’t take any notes if you don’t have these two things. Taking notes forces you to listen to what the teacher is saying so you can effectively record it in your note book. This strengthens your ability to focus.

Most high school students find it hard to focus and a remedy for this can be teaching them how to take notes in class.


As you take down notes in your class, it’s not guaranteed that you’ll get everything the teacher will say word-for-word and be able to write it down 100% accurate. In some situations you’ll only get the foundational concept and will have to write it down in your own words.

This act will make your reasoning improve because you’ll be forced to pay attention so you can effectively take down the important stuff.

Using your brain for rapid fire thinking will do more in your life than you can imagine; you’ll learn how to think faster, how to dissect information and how to express it in your terms, only relying upon your understanding of the main themes/concepts.

It’s never too early to practice for the future. Therefore, high school students should be encouraged to take notes to help them learn how to reason and think better.

Better studying

Learning how to take notes not only improves your ability to reason and concentrate but it also improves the way in which you study. Traditionally most people won’t study with a notebook aside because they feel writing down things only slows them down. In truth, note taking is a form of mind-mapping that creates crucial road signs that you can use to get to the destination of knowledge.

Forgive me if I sound philosophical but that’s a good analogy.

The more you take notes in class, the more you learn how to do it and the easier you can apply it to your studying.

You can easily express concepts in your own terms which makes for good comprehension necessary to understand topics.

Pre-requisite of learning

Taking notes is a pre-requisite of learning in most educational arenas because it is impossible for our minds to grab hold of every concept that is tossed out verbally to us.

Students therefore stand to benefit a lot from note taking because they can study twice, that is, first in class by listening and noting down what the teacher says and second when they review their notes at their own time.

With that said, we can easily say that writing down notes is not only a good practice but a strategic one too.

Building Interest

For high school students that find it hard to concentrate and focus, taking down notes can be an effective way to stay engaged and build interest into the topic which they can then use to further their educational performance.

It’s therefore important that high school students learn how to take notes because it is an invaluable asset that can change the way they perceive education and learning.

To be an effective learner you need to develop some interest for what you’re learning and writing down notes can be a good way to learn and understand concepts better.

If you enjoyed this article check out these effective study strategies that will take you to the next level