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Lesson #4 - Getting Ready For ClassRemember that STUDY SMART means you use PAT, a systematic approach to study. The first step in Systematic Study is Preparing. In this lesson, you will learn how to Prepare for class.
Q: Why do you need to Prepare?
There are two reasons why Preparing is a part of successful study. The first is to eliminate competing thoughts.
Our minds can only think about one thing at a time. If you think about something other than your class, then you will not pay attention, and you may miss important information.
Preparing helps you focus your attention on the class and forget about other classes or things you might be doing.
Second, Preparing lets you build on knowledge you already have. It is well known
that we learn much more quickly and easily if we build on knowledge we have than if we
learn something completely new. By Preparing, you can recall your knowledge and use
it to build new knowledge.
The main idea is to clear your mind and concentrate on the topic of each class. Here
are four specific actions you can take to prepare for class:
You should Prepare before every class. This will help you listen carefully and learn more. As long as you are in class, you should learn as much as you can. Most classes cover all or nearly all the material that will be on tests. So, if you can learn well in class, you will have more time for other things after school.
You can Prepare best if you get to class a little early. Sit down and relax. Then, look at your notes, think about questions, predict topics and details, and think about the reading you did. You do not have to do all of these to be Prepared. But, you should do one or two.
Q: What about your goals?
You do want to remember your goals. The standards you have set for yourself are important. Specifically, you can remind yourself how the class will help you meet your goals.
Here are some examples of how you could Prepare for classes in different subjects.
When you study systematically, you begin by Preparing. After you do this for a while, it will become second nature.
Now, you can Prepare for each class you have before actually going to class.
Think about each class you will have tomorrow and answer the questions below. You can
use Form 4.1.
Think about these same questions when you go to class tomorrow. Do this for every class for the next two weeks. It should take about 10-15 minutes each day.
Remember to think about these questions and your answers for one or two minutes just before each class begins. In the next lesson, you will learn how to listen better to get the most from classes.
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