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Help With AP Bio Class (Teacher doesn't teach!)

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CMH22's picture
Joined: Feb 2008
Help With AP Bio Class (Teacher doesn't teach!)

Hi! I'm new here on the forums, and I figured that this place would be a great place to receive some help, so hopefully you guys will be helpful!

I am currently in the AP Bio class at my high school. Let me tell you, my teacher is horrible at teaching, and I mean horrible. He does nothing but stand up there and talk about the most random things ever. We do not take notes, we merely look at the powerpoint presentations. And when I say we do not take notes, NONE of us have not even 1 page of notes. That's kind of sad. So basically, up until now, we have basically been teaching ourselves instead, since we do not receive anything remotely helpful from our teacher. I have been struggling to learn anything in that class. I read the book, but I try to memorize too many details for the test. I've looked at the notes here on course-notes.org, and they are better since they are more condensed, but once again, I am basically memorizing, not learning or understanding any of the concepts. Although I can barely pass the class with this, I know this will not be acceptable for the AP Test and will hurt me dearly for that. Reading the book even several times does not really help for some reason. I have 2 AP Bio study guides, one from Cliffs and the other one from McGraw hill. It's still a little hard to fully grasp everything. I am struggling here, and the AP test is slowly creeping up.

Basically what I'm asking are for resources so that I can help teach myself and understand these concepts. (I would look for a tutor or teacher help, but I'm involved in a lot of activities and sports, and I work as well, so I do not have much time for that.) Besides reading the book and study guides, what else do you guys find helpful to learn these concepts? I will look at anything to help me in this class. I really want to do well, so please help with anything, and I will happily take it. Thanks in advance for any response I receive.

megs500's picture
Joined: Feb 2008

Uggh, I feel the same way (in certain respects of course, as I don't take AP bio, but I know the feeling)
Anyhow, I'm sure some of your friends in that class are feeling the same way-get together and just start going over things. One way that has helped us (and that another teacher suggested) is that each of you in the group become the 'master' of the certain topic. For example, you could learn about the things in the cell, and Julie can learn about respiration and the broader functions performed by the cell, and then you guys teach each other. Another way to do it is to make up stories. For example, for the cell, pretend you have a package that you want shipped, and trace how the package moves through the cell-the packing process, modification, tagging, etc...until it's ready to be shipped to teh receiver.

Also, bio is kind of, in certain ways, commen sense if you really think about it. Try to understand it and figure out which parts you don't understand. Then go look up the topics online and find out.

You'll kind of just have to keep quizzing yourself over and over and start studying now. It'll be a lot of independent study-type work, but we all have to do what it takes if we want a 5. Anyway, good luck...and know that you're not alone.

PS-After the course is over with, talk to your administration about the teacher and explain how you really didn't feel that you were prepared to take the AP bio test and that much of your studying and work was done on your own. Unless it's his first year, there has to be some reason why he's still teaching the class (it's possible that no one ever said anything).

...in riding a horse we borrow freedom...

doublehelixbiology's picture
Joined: Jan 2008

If you're having trouble getting good grades on your tests, take the Biology.Synced.Org Mock Tests. They have a test for ALL chapters and answers are provided. Don't be surprised if you see similar problems on your teachers tests. :D

Select a chapter on the top right drop down menu and then under "tests and quizzes" you'll see the mock test.


P.S. Tell your friends about that site. It's becoming one of the largest AP Biology Resource Site and people still don't know about it.

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