How Not to Forget What You Have Learnt in Class
- Mar 15, 2017
Our attempt of learning at studies can be likened with a leaking bucket of water, the more water you pour in, the higher amount is lost. We tend to forget things due to a number of reasons. These include less focus and insufficient time spent on the subject, not practicing what we learn and minimum application of our studies in real life. In order to stop this ‘leaking’ of information from our brains and retain most of what we learn at studies, we need to adopt certain scientifically proven practices. Not only will they help us in our daily learning requirement but also keep our mind fit and healthy.
Often we study for long hours continuously and hardly have time for anything else. While this trait is considered the hallmark of a studious pupil, taking breaks actually helps in the long run. Try breaking up your study sessions into smaller periods, much like a classroom routine, as per suitability. According to various researches conducted in this area, spaced-out learning allows you to retain up to 100% more information. This practice also helps with long-term retention of what you have learned in the study sessions; thus you perform better in examinations.
Sleep After Study
Sleeping or resting is almost as important as studying. Studies have shown that the process of learning stimulates certain synapses and triggers impulses or responses from it. If you fall asleep after studies, these impulses keep on triggering in an identical fashion without any external disturbances from other sensory inputs. So, even biologically our brain benefits from the practice of sleeping after studies and the retention process are strengthened.
While repeating same concepts over and over does help with short-term memory retention, it is of little use in the longer term. So, instead of learning and repeating the same thing, it is a better practice to study more materials over a short period of time. The key is understanding; take your time to understand when you are trying to learn a concept or a problem. Because once you are able to grasp the “why it was” of the issue, the process of learning “how it was” becomes much easier.
Always Add a Review Session
Ideally, the process of reviewing should begin from the start of the study session or semester. Invariably, over your course of learning, you will come across certain concepts, theories, problems that you find difficult to master. Make a separate review sheet where you keep notes of all such issues for revisiting them in future. Work on them for the time being as you do normally, with the review sheet helping you keep track of all such education materials. Consult this review sheet before every examination so that you are on top of the materials that gave you the most trouble.
Practice What You Have Learned
One of the best ways to learn, understand and retain what you have learned is to discuss, teach others and try its practical applications. Through these processes, you get to revisit the concepts in different ways and through different approaches, so that it is repeated in your mind several times over without making the process tedious and repetitive. Teaching someone else is also another form of retention process, as you are delving deeper into the concept.
As the clichéd saying goes, “a healthy mind in a healthy body” – staying fit helps your mind to be focused and concentrate better. Proper exercise, diet and rest help to stay relaxed and prepare you for the day ahead. Also, socializing with friends and family is a great way for your mind to be refreshed and retain sharpness through changed settings; only avoid talking ‘studies’ during such times!
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