When you learn something new, how do you ensure that what you just learn will truly stick with you? How can you ensure that the next day you won’t be like “wait, what was that thing I just learned about yesterday”?
In my personal journey, I have found quite a few methods to ensure that what I learn truly sticks with me for as long as possible, and today I thought I’d share them with you. Hopefully someone finds these helpful
Take notes by hand. (Or go over your digital notes)
When you take notes by hand, you have to put a lot more effort into it than if you’re just typing out your notes. And basically, the more effort you put into making your notes about a certain topic, the more you’re likely to remember that topic for a long time. You can hear more about that in this video.
However, when you’re learning to code and you need so save some code snippets for later, writing notes by hand becomes kind of tedious, and also you can’t just copy-paste code snippets from paper into your IDE. So if you truly need to make digital notes, I’d recommend to at least put your best effort into them. Or maybe come back to your rough, quick notes some minutes later, and go over them. Give them some structure, draw something meaningful that will help you remember the concepts more easily. Add pictures. I recommend Milanote for taking this kind of notes.
Explain what you learned to someone
Since we’re talking about effort, you should definitely try explaining what you just learned to someone. Trust me, knowing a subject and having it make sense for you inside your mind is nothing like being able to teach that subject to someone else. I often struggle with putting my newly-gained knowledge into words, and sometimes I do understand the topics, other times I realize I’m truly lacking. Teaching someone else what you learn is an amazing way to reinforce those concepts, and you’ll probably end up learning more things yourself.
Ask, ask, ask for feedback
Whenever you learn something new, share it with someone! Having instant feedback delivered to you (mostly if it’s of the positive kind) while you learn will keep you encouraged to keep learning. (Ever heard of the PICNUF principle?).
And if you have any questions, you should feel free to ask them too! “Did I understand this well?” “Am I missing something?” “I honesly didn’t understand this part…could someone explain it to me?”.
The less…“holes” there are in your “knowledge tower”, the better. You shouldn’t try to keep building new knowledge on top of shaky knowledge. Make sure to solidify your knowledge.
I hope you found some of these helpful
Do you have another personal method to make sure new knowledge sticks with you? I’d love to hear all about it
Have a nice day!