Are you overwhelmed with the amount of material you must read and retain in school? Try following these ten hot tips and you’ll be operating at peak performance. They’re all skills you learned at SuperCamp and should be familiar to you. Commit to using them every day!
Pay attention to physiology
Slump down in your chair. In this position, try to feel like a great learner, excited and confident about school. It’s not possible. Now, sit up straight, eyes wide open. In this position, feel uninspired. You can’t do it. Much of your success depends on getting in the right state for learning. Sit up straight in school and when you study at home and you’ll be more alert and attentive. Remember SLANT (Sit up, Lean forward, Ask questions, Nod your head, Talk to your teacher).
Cultivate a winning attitude
Maintaining a positive attitude is your most important learning asset. You need to mentally prepare before any learning experience. Henry Ford said, “Whether you think you can or you think you can’t – you’re right.”
Speed forward with Quantum Reading
You were probably taught not to use your finger when you read. However, research has shown that using your finger as a visual guide pulls your eyes forward and can double your reading speed. Your finger keeps you from backtracking, which slows you down. So remember to use your finger, as well as the other Quantum Reading skills you learned at SuperCamp.
Create the right learning environment
Environment also affects learning. Create a comfortable study area at home. Make sure you have a secluded spot with a desk or table, a comfortable chair (but not so comfortable that you fall asleep!), good lighting, and all the study tools you need nearby. And before you settle down to learn, put a “Do Not Disturb” sign on the door to cut down on interruptions.
Try music to boost concentration
Research indicates that we learn more in a relaxed yet alert state. Baroque music seems to promote this ideal learning state. Music by composers such as Bach, Handel, Vivaldi and Pachelbel enhance your learning capabilities. Try playing this music softly in the background while studying.
Remember the importance of feedback
From infancy through adulthood, we learn through our mistakes. Remember to learn from all the feedback you get, whether it is a failed test or a poor relationship. In your path to become an excellent learner, feedback give you the information you need to succeed. Check your SuperCamp playbook to refresh your memory about Failure Leads to Success and the rest of the 8 Keys of Excellence.
Use a calendar to mark days for tests or due dates of important papers. Studying ahead reduces stress and increases your ability to remember at test time. Circuit Learning can help you plan your study time effectively. Again, refer to your playbook for more on this valuable study organizational tool.
Discover the power of This is It!
“This is it!” means making the most of every moment. It also means doing whatever it takes to make a subject interesting. Be creative! Relating the topic you’re learning in the moment to something you already know or like is a great learning device. When you find a familiar personal connection to something you’re learning, you almost always find it interesting and remember it better.
Overcome the obstacle of a blank page with freewriting
When faced with writer’s block, freewriting provides visible and immediate progress. Choose a subject and set the timer for a specified amount of time, depending on the assignment. Write continuously until your time is up. Don’t worry about structuring sentences, fixing grammar or spelling, backtracking or crossing things out – just write whatever comes to mind as quickly as you can. Freewriting clears your mind, focuses your ideas and makes the invisible visible. Go with the flow – you’ll be amazed at the ideas you come up with. Now you can organize all those ideas and begin your first draft.
And last but not least – take breaks
Every thirty minutes it helps to take a short five-minute break. Take mini-breaks more often by standing up and stretching whenever you notice your mind wandering. Studies show that you remember best what you learned just before and just after a break – so the more breaks, the more you remember!