You don't need to read the casebook. You don't need to brief.
No one can come into law school thinking "i'm going to be top 10%" It's fanciful and naive. On a related note, it doesn't matter if you're not top 10%. Don't get into this top 10% or kill myself mentality.
Although first year grades are very important, they are only important because of the 2L summer job. Usually top firms hire in this manner and the basis for their selection is the 2L summer. The 2L summer is decided based on the 1L grades. So you can see why its important.
Now, the interesting part...what gets good gradesYou need the relevant facts out of each case and you need the rule out of each class. Any given case is either dishing out a bright-line rule or a fact-sensitive rule. If its a fact-sensitive rule then you need to know the facts out of the case, if not, then you don't. If you follow this sort of advice and you know just that much, you can get an A.So why read?You don't need to. You don't need to read the casebook. You don't need to brief. But go to class. 1) Get former outlines (which typically have the facts and rules of each case)2) Take these outlines to class with you and edit them on location.3) Study outlines/glannons4) Take practice exams5) Do something fun with your free time (sports, whatever)Anyway, if you guys need to know more or have specific questions, let me know. Peace.
How do you get your hands on former outlines?