Lighting the Spark to Learn – Good Study Habits

It’s exam time and I already know what I am going to see and hear around our house: stacks of paper and a lot of groaning. I’ll walk over and find messy binders and notes that may or may not make sense and a student with blood-shot eyes. What frustrates me about this scene? It all seems so unnecessary.I think learning how to learn ought to be a course taught in school right alongside science and social-studies. It ought to be incremental, starting in Grade 1, so that by the time Grade 10 or 11 rolls by, interacting with lessons is not so daunting and confusing.Getting good grades shouldn’t be this stressful; it should be fascinating. But I am not sure one can get to the fascinating part if you don’t know how to learn properly and if you don’t know how to get your mind to retain it in an effective way.There are excellent courses outside of school that one can tap into. Dr. Marc Dussault, for example, has researched and packaged an excellent resource for students. It is affordable, I just don’t know how many people are aware of it. There are also excellent articles on the internet on time management, learning styles, information retention; I just don’t find those things in my kid’s backpacks when they get home at 4:00. Why not? Wouldn’t it be a win for everyone if I did?Most high-schools offer a class on “Good Study Habits” but who shows up and how much of that do they remember? It needs to be something we refresh and reintroduce over and over to be of any benefit.Those eager to learn will take the time to hunt out a strategy for learning, but what about those students who are already reluctant about coming to the table? I think we could light the spark to learn if the whole thing felt achievable in the first place.Jay Neumann

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