Before we get into how to remember what you study, let’s look at how not to do it. Cramming is what most students do. They put off studying till the last possible moment, then go crazy, drink coffee, drink Red Bull or take pills to stay awake, and try to force all sorts of facts and information into their brains on the night before the exam.
If you have no choice, that is one thing. But most students do have a choice. Planning, self-discipline, and scheduling are precisely the things that are going to make you successful in life. Why not realize that school is preparation for life? Why not realize that putting everything off till the last minute and cramming under pressure at the end is not the way to live, nor is it any way to get the most out of college or books or your courses?
If you prefer that method, you probably ought to get a job and put off getting an education until you learn the value it can have for you. Learning can be enjoyable, but you have to give it a chance to be. Taking pills and cramming after putting off studying is not much different from starving yourself for three days and then eating like a pig on the fourth day. It makes sense to work toward achieving a balance in your eating habits and in your work habits.
THE SNATCH-AND-REINFORCE METHOD OF STUDYING
Without question, the best way to recall what you study is by periodic reinforcement, by snatching short periods of time to study. Five minutes here, ten minutes there, a half hour there. Short periods of time are typically energizing. You don’t have time to be bored. There isn’t time for your mind to wander. There isn’t time for the material to become routine, to “go in one ear and out the other.”
Snatch short periods throughout each day, and the material will stick. Consider your knowledge of a popular song you hear on the radio. No one really ever had to, or has to, teach you a song. You hear it a few times, you remember it. There are seven-year-olds who can sing dozens of songs. Are they geniuses? Hardly. Usually, they have a CD or iPod. They hear the song a few times and soon it is embedded in their memories. They know it without trying.
The same goes for recalling facts and information from a book. If you just stash it once in your short-term memory, there is always a danger it will escape you. But the material that gets reinforced goes into long-term storage. It stays longer, is tied to a number of other memories, and can be recalled easily.
Put some material on notecards every morning, look through those notecards several times throughout the day, and you will be surprised at how much you can recall without really ever having studied.
THINK THE GAME
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We combine our unique PGC culture with a variety of teaching methods and learning environments to maximize the learning potential of those that attend our sessions. In addition to spending 6-7 hours on the court each day, lessons will be reinforced through classroom sessions and video analysis.
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