Last week, when I spoke to high school students about climate change, there was a Q&A session at the end. The questions ranged from "How did you build your treehouse?" to "Don't you want to go back to Japan? Mixed in with these questions, a frequent question that is often asked is "How do you study?"
It would be nice if the question were a little more specific, but when asked this question, I tend to answer with "You should study every day" because I don't have much time. It's not wrong, but I think they want to know the key to remember everything in an instant. There are indeed times when knowing something like a key can make you suddenly better at something. Changing the way I hold a pencil could suddenly make me more stable when drawing. I adopted a different way of preparing for exams, and suddenly my results improved.
So I recently watched this YouTube video on studying, and it hit the spot for me. It's new and doesn't have many likes or followers, but it's more practical than anything I've seen before. This method explains how to draw a human figure, but I think this structure can apply to all studies.
The first definition of learning is "continuous memorisation". Active learning explains how to do this continuous memorisation efficiently. I mentioned above about "studying every day" because by continuously inputting information, the brain passively remembers the information. As she describes it, active learning is a more proactive way of studying to get the brain to record information rather than expecting the brain to remember the information one day. If you search for active running on YouTube, you'll find that some of it are a bit off the beaten track, such as studying actively or studying what you want to learn, so it may differ from what others are talking about. At any rate, what we're talking about here on YouTube isn't the "get rid of distractions like TV" mentality.
This active learning is a structured way for independent learners to store information effectively in their brains. It is best to watch this YouTube for more details, but here is a summary of what you can learn and apply to painting and other types of study.
The "whole process of studying", which takes several months, is divided into four parts.
Plan what you are going to study and its period. If you dabble in drawing every day, you may eventually improve, but it will take a very long time. Instead, spend the next two months concentrating on studying artistic anatomy so that your brain knows what you are learning.
In art, you rotate through gesture drawing, shadowing, anatomy, etc. Even if you don't do one thing perfectly, you move on. The following rotation will have a synergistic effect: you will do better what you didn't do well before. Instead of practising pronunciation in English all the time, you can improve your conversation and pronunciation by reading English texts and working on your listening skills.
Learn (Not result)
No matter what the result of your drawing is, it's good to know that you are learning. It's not about putting a band-aid on a wound; it's about understanding why you got hurt in the first place so you can avoid getting hurt again. You may be making the same mistakes in simultaneous equations all the time. It is better to understand why you are making the same mistakes, rather than just doing a makeshift answer and being done with it, as this will lead to better results in the future, even if your performance is lacking at the time.
Connected to the third point, this is where you analyse what you did wrong and try to improve. To be honest, I think it would be more straightforward to put Analyse third and Learn fourth.
She s also divided the daily study into four processes.
Using YouTube or a textbook, analyse the information you want to memorise. The analysis is about comparison so that you can use more than one source of information.
It's a good idea to take notes on what you see, read or hear in your own words. In fact, that's what I just did to write this blog.
The next step is to do a few repetitions, but vary it a bit, try some more complex problems, or create new problems in combination with other problems. It may be easy to remember the Pythagorean Theorem as a mathematical formula, but to calculate angles quickly, you need to practice it repeatedly.
At this stage, you can try to draw a picture or make up an English sentence without any reference. You can start by writing from memory. It's great if you can write or draw without referring to anything at all. But actually, you are referring to something that you have recorded, but you don't even think you are referring to your memory because it is already automatic. That's memorisation, and you have learned something!