Sometimes we get stuck with teachers that simply cannot teach, and other times we are forced to attend boring classes. How are you supposed to know what to study for the test if no one really teaches it to you? Do not fear! With the help of my fellow interns, I have found tons of awesome online (and free!) resources to use that will help you overcome those terrible classes. Without further ado, here is a list that will help you conquer your most feared courses.
The “THEY HAVE EVERYTHING!” Sites
Khan Academy (Youtube): You may probably know Salman Khan from his YouTube videos, in which he speaks with a soothing voice as he helps everything make sense. He covers a diverse array of subjects from art history to biology. However, in addition to his wonderful YouTube videos, he also has a beautiful website, where you can watch informative videos and practice the skills you’ve learned.
SparkNotes: This site has saved me so many times over the past few years as I struggled to understand what all the books I was reading were talking about. However, this site offers more than just literature explanations; it gives answers to basically every subject you will ever encounter at school. All the information is organized, succinct, and comprehensible. If you prefer reading the information over watching videos, it will be better to use SparkNotes rather than Khan Academy.
Crash Course: As a visual learner, I cried of happiness when I found Crash Course. If you don’t know Crash Course, it is created by the famous vlogbrothers, John and Hank Green (yes! It is the John Green who wrote The Fault in Our Stars!). Their mini lectures on history (U.S., World), literature, and science (biology, ecology, chemistry) are literally crash courses on everything you learn in class, condensed in short 10 minute videos, filled with many colorful animations. It’s a great resource to utilize because it makes learning a lot more interesting.
BBC GCSE Bitesize: Suggested by fellow editorial intern, Elizabeth Watson, BBC’s GCSE Bitesize website is a great resource to use even if you may not follow the British school system. It has a variety of subjects that you can review and then quiz yourself on. You may find it helpful when you have a test coming up!
Open Yale Courses: Another awesome site suggested by Elizabeth, Open Yale Courses provide online introductory college courses for a variety of subjects. The website is easy to navigate through and all the lectures for a course are labeled according to topic and posted on YouTube. In addition to that, the course materials that come along with the course are provided.
Educreations: This is a great educational website that my precalculus teacher uses a lot with us. You can search for a particular concept, and a video will pop up if someone created a video lesson regarding that concept. It’s even available on the app store!
Purdue Owl: It is an awesome go-to guide for writing. Everything is organized neatly, and it provides so many great tips on the different steps when it comes to writing. It also has help for writing different things such as poetry and fiction. In addition, if you don’t want to go the EasyBib way or are forced to MLA or APA format everything yourself, Purdue Owl has a very comprehensive guide to everything MLA or APA related (even how to cite a tweet in MLA format!)
Animated Atlas: American History Timeline: This is an amazing timeline of American History that organizes everything really well with awesome color coding. One warning: it’s a great resource for students to use as a remainder as to when the events happen in American history, but it doesn’t go into depth of what happened.
Poetry Foundation: This is another great site suggested by Elizabeth. You can search for poetry, find content related to a certain poem, and even look for resources that can help you with your own poetry writing.
The YUNiversity: Using awesome memes, the YUNiversity explains different grammar rules in a fun, concise, and understandable manner. If you ever have a grammar rule you don’t understand that wasn’t on the website already, you can ask the YUNiversity!
BBC: Religions: BBC has created an excellent site for those of you who are taking religion. It includes many facts about each religion, such as its beliefs, origins, customs, etc. Go check it out!
Zachary Jones: Suggested by another fellow editorial intern, Gabrielle Scullard, this website has many resources to help you Spanish lovers. It includes photo vocabulary, music, and pop culture articles, which in my experience, makes things a lot more interesting.
nciku: This is a website that will be very helpful for those taking Chinese. You can not only search what certain words mean, you can also write it out if you don’t know the pinyin of the word to be able to type it out. It has example sentences with the word you search for, Chinese conversation of the day on the homepage, video notes, and many other very useful resources that you should check out.
Talk To Me In Korean: This is an all around great site for those who are taking Korean or is interested in learning the language. The site has a introductory Korean series and a new advanced Korean series. You can download free audio lessons along with the lesson notes. There are also a lot of other interesting features, such as Korean vocab with pictures, Korean drama phrases and learning Korean with K-POP.
G Major Music Theory: To be honest, I have no musical ability whatsoever. Thankfully, Gabrielle suggested this website as well. She highly recommends it to those who will or are taking music theory, as it helped her a lot with harmonic dictation. All the materials on the website are free.
ScienceDaily: This is basically the science version of NY Times. It’s great for researching different topics and definitely a go to resource for science related research papers or projects.
chemistNATE: Like PatrickJMT, chemistNATE, explains everything slowly and clearly. He writes everything down on the piece of paper and explains all his workings along the way. He is a great resource to use if you like how everything is done step by step. Although he mostly goes over AP Chemistry concepts, it doesn’t mean non-AP students shouldn’t go and check him out!
UC Davis ChemWiki: You can basically find everything on here, and because I would rather read the information than watch videos sometimes (ain’t nobody got time for that!), I used this site a lot for chemistry because it has a lot of detailed explanations and examples. UC Davis also has a biowiki, mathwiki, statwiki, physwiki, geowiki, and solarwiki.
Crash Course Chemistry: This is the Crash Course created by vlogbrothers that I mentioned above. Like I said, it is a great resource to use for visual learners. Hank also uses real life examples, which I find really helpful because it helps me understand why I need to know the concept. However, this may probably be more suitable for beginner chemistry students (AP students should still use it because it is still a great source for revision!).
Brightstorm Chemistry: The videos explain the concepts really well and provide some great examples. However, the instructor talks a bit too fast, which may be hard for some beginner chemistry students to fully grasp the concept when watching the video the first time; on the other hand, it may be a good way to prevent you from falling asleep.
Bozeman Biology: Mr. Anderson is a god to all AP Biology students. His explanations are easy to comprehend and they clear up a lot of confusion. Besides biology concepts, he also explains labs and math concepts (ex. Chi square) that biology students need to be able understand and use. He even explains the main points of the AP Biology course that College Board wants all AP Biology students to know and provides great examples for them.
MIT Fundamentals of Biology: MIT provides awesome lectures to introductory biology that all biology students can use. It may contain more information than you need to know, but it is comprehensive and it provides clear explanations in the topics and experiments you will go over in class. In addition to biology, MIT also posted up a plethora of other lectures from a variety of classes that would be great to check out as well.
Crash Course Biology/Crash Course Ecology: Like Crash Course Chemistry, these two series provide amazing visuals, but do not go into as much depth as AP students would like (still an awesome resource for revision!). It’s better for those of you taking introductory biology courses.
The Physics Classroom: This website provide explanations to a lot of physics concepts, and the explanations are easy to understand. All the tutorials are organized into different concepts. What’s even better about this website is the fact that there are practice problems with answers at the bottom of a page after you learn a concept.
Physics Forums: Like the name says, this is a forum where students can talk about different physics problems and ask questions. However, unlike the name, this forum is not only restricted to physics, because there are also different sections for the other subjects such as engineering, chemistry, and astronomy!
Tarrou’s Chalk Talk: BAM! Mr. Tarrou’s chalk talks are fun and interesting to watch. In addition to his awesome drawings and penmanship, he provides great explanations and gives wonderful examples to go with it. By the time you finish one of his videos, you will be as excited about math as he is because you will no longer be ripping all your hair out trying to do math. He provides lectures for algebra I, algebra II, trigonometry, precalculus, calculus, and AP Statistics.
PatrickJMT: My precalculus teacher loves him and shows us his videos in class all the time, and I completely understand why. He explains everything clearly and does not have a monotone voice at all, making math a little bit more bearable. He shows his working and explains how he does everything, which is great for slower mathematicians like me.
Mr. Roldridge: Otherwise known as chemistNATE, he explains math concepts really well, and shows his workings, just like his chemistry videos. However, he only goes over algebra and some trig concepts.
Purplemath: I used this website quite a lot to help me with math, since I always seem to need help with the subject. It actually helps me understand math because the explanations are great. However, it only goes over some basic math concepts, algebra, advanced algebra, and some trig. Nevertheless, it is a great resource to use.
Math is Fun: Do not be fooled by the cute little drawings! This site explains some high school math concepts really well. It simplifies the concepts and generalizes them to help you understand. There are also plenty of practice problems and examples.
Wolfram Alpha: Approach this with caution because this site basically allows you to search for the answer to any math question (Including derivation!). It may include graphs, number lines, etc. regarding to the question being asked. What’s also so spectacular about it is that you see the step-by-step solution once you entered the question in if you sign up, which you can do for free (You only get 3 step-by-step solutions though, because anything more than that requires you to upgrade to Wolfram Alpha Pro, which is not free.).
Quizlet: This is a great online flashcard website. You can make your own set, find other people’s flashcard sets, and study from them. You can also play games, and test yourself. Quizlet is definitely a great site to use when it comes to studying.
Google Books: Another one suggested by Elizabeth, Google Books is an awesome search engine to use when you do research papers. You can find different free, full texts that would be very helpful to use.