“I just don’t get this!” is a cry for help from a student of any age. Here is the first thing about the learning process – if you don’t get it you won’t remember it and you won’t learn it. A student must understand a concept, in their own words, to be able to learn it.
So the first step to learning something effectively is to understand it. If you do not understand it ask your teacher or instructor to explain it another way. You will not be the only person not understanding and it is your teacher’s job to see that you do understand.
Once you think you understand it then write it out in your own words, this will help to put it into short-term memory. Now this might require the old-fashioned pen and paper rather than a laptop. This is where most students stop and then wonder why they cannot remember material. Short term is good for a few minutes, hours or days, after that it is gone. You have to take the next step to move it into long-term memory.
Recitation (saying something over and over again) has been proved to be the most effective way of placing information into long-term memory. And by long-term I am talking about a life time. Reading something quietly over and over again to yourself or writing it down a number of times is not as effective as reading the material, in your own words, over and over again ALOUD.
BRAIN FOOD – For the MEMORY
There are five essential nutrients for effective brain function, and this includes memory. Many teenagers are low in iodine, as can be said about the general population. It is readily found in some seafood but if you do not eat seafood then you must obtain it from another source.
Decades ago the government placed iodine in table salt so that inland populations may have a non-seafood source of the nutrient. If your family eats salt then it may be beneficial to purchase iodised salt. Other nutrients are omega-3 (from oily fish), iron (meat), zinc (almonds) and the B vitamins.
Two herbs gaining respect for their ability to aid memory are Ginkgo biloba and gotu kola. Ginkgo increases blood flow and fluidity to the brain. Improved circulation aides brain function.
The quality of food is so important. We do no good for our children when we give into their tantrums for low nutrient junk food. Be parents to your children now and their friends when they grow up.