Sunday, March 10, 2013

Textbook Reading - The Primary Root of Knowledge

“Books are the plane, and the train, and the road. They are the destination, and the journey. They are home.” ― Anna Quindlen, How Reading Changed My Life
Textbook reading is as important as reading study materials and notes that make you a complete, efficient and effective, innovative and problem-solving student. Many of the students take reading for granted, exclusively dependent on materials. That’s harmful. Reading for pleasure at least a few minutes a day will improve the subject knowledge and ability to answer all kinds of questions during entrance exams!
“A mind needs books as a sword needs a whetstone, if it is to keep its edge.” ― George R.R. Martin, A Game of Thrones
Variety is the Spice of Life: Students do not fix themselves in reading any one kind of book. Reading different kinds of materials, text-books, of different publishers, science magazines, etc enables to understand and think the subject in different angles.
“If you only read the books that everyone else is reading, you can only think what everyone else is thinking.” ― Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood
SQ3R Method of reading (Survey, Question, Read, Recite, Review): SQ3R Method is a fairly quick process. This enables students to read several times faster than the average because they are reading to answer questions and guess incoming next. Reading with a purpose enhances interest, concentration, comprehension, and retention of the subject content in mind.
Survey the Book: Read the cover; go through the Table of Contents, Introduction, and back cover to become familiar with the theme of the material. Survey the chapter to read. Read the title, topic headings, know the number of pages the chapter.
Reading the book: 
  1. Read one topic at a time to understand the material without breaks.  
  2. Read vigorously, with the intention of getting answers and solving problems.  
  3. Associate or visualize the content to make reading meaningful and memorable. 
  4. Do not engage yourself in taking notes while reading, that interrupts the process of effective reading.  
  5. Highlight or underline only the main ideas and supporting details with no more than 10-15% of the page.  
  6. Write marginal notations to distinguish main ideas, examples and new terminology. 
  7. Group studies make better clarify and understand the subject. 
  8. Break the reading schedules every hour or a few to avoid boredom or tiresome. 
  9. Read to answer questions, to gather information and to critically analyze the content.  
  10. Don’t miss studying captions, pictures, illustrations, tables, graphs and charts. 
  11. Don’t delay looking up into a dictionary for any word that is new to you.  
Question the content: Don’t escape answering questions throughout and at the end of the chapter, aroused in your mind, or from worksheets, home tests, quizzes, etc.

Recite: Sometimes reading loudly several times helps make it clearer and impressive, especially quotes, definitions, formulae, new terminology, values, dates, etc. Students who recite forget only 20% of learned material within a period of two-weeks. Those who do not recite or discuss the material forget 80% of the information in the same time period.

Review: Periodically stop reading and try to recollect the same. Review the material within 24, 48 hours or at least 72 hours time gap. Review often periodically. The more you review, the more information you retain and more capable to analyze and solve the problems.
“If one cannot enjoy reading a book over and over again, there is no use in reading it at all.” - Oscar Wilde