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Efficient learning: make breaks and know your learning styles

German version

If you prepare yourself for an exam and you are learning and learning and learning it is very important to make a break also. During this breaks you should leave the working space and let some fresh air into the room. Mostly some movement helps to refresh the head and get some energy. The following “breaks” are an overview to give you some examples. But the perfect type of break you have to find for yourself. Mostly your body tells you if it is time for a break or not.

  • The saving breaks are the shortest breaks and have a duration about 10 or 20 seconds. They are for getting the stuff stuck in your head. Such a break can be done after reading a chapter of page through breathe in and out really slowly.
  • You should do a three of five-minute break if you change the stuff you are learning. Such a pause helps you to understand the subject much better and a distance to the learned things can give you another focus.
  • After an intense learning phase (max. 90 minutes) you should take a break for minimum 15 minutes. Otherwise you can be tired and more slow in learning other things. If this is the case, just go for a little walk or breathe some fresh air or just catch some coffee for yourself.
  • If you learned up to 4 hours a longer break is necessary to get energy again. You should leave your working area for one or two hours. This recreational phase can be easily connected with your lunchtime. But be careful at lunchtime if you eat too much or too fat. It may happen that your body set the focus on your stomach and your brain will be more slow. So you should always eat a good mixture: Vegetable, fruits and light things are better because they give you vitamins and nutrients. A walk after the food is also a good alternative to lose the tiredness.

What is your learning style?

If you know which type of learner you are it will be easier for you to get all the stuff in your head. But this isn´t easy. Here are some styles but as mentioned above you always have to find your type for your own 😉

  • The visual style: you are learning good and fast if you can read it. Blackboards and pie charts are always stuck in your mind. The best learning method for you is to do some mind maps drawings or diagrams. Search for pictures to visualize the subject. Index cards are also a good method to learn vocabulary. Write in your own words what you have to learn. Written things will be stuck always better in mind. Maybe you place some dates and facts in your room and every time you pass them you will remember the written things on it this has to be done so long till you are able to know the stuff without passing it.
  • The auditive style: You are learning very fast and easy if you hear something. This type has the advantage to learn things during the lecture because you hear it. You are learning the best if you are telling the stuff to somebody or to yourself or while discussing with your friends about the topic. A hint for learning at home is to record yourself and listen to it over and over again. Disadvantage here is that the most of the scripts are written and even not spoken in lecture.
  • The communication style: You learning fast if you can speak with somebody about the topic. Only writing the things down or hearing them is not an option for you. The best thing for you is a learning group or somebody who discuss with you. Through this you understand the connections better and are able to safe the knowledge. The communication type is slightly in common with the auditive type because through hearing and speaking things out they will be stuck better in your brain.
  • The motoric style: You learn things while doing them for your own. You learn much better if you know the process. “Learning by doing” will be your moto. For you it will be important to engage in the lectures or move while learning. Even swinging in the chair can be a help for you.

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