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  • The average student takes notes at a rate of one-third of a word per second.

  • The average teacher speaks about two to three words per second.

  • Bottom line, if you're trying to copy down everything your teacher is saying while he drones on about Shakespeare, you're going to fall seriously behind.

  • Note-taking is an important skill in and out of school.

  • You can make the difference between passing and failing a test, excelling at a job or even enjoying a complicated movie.

  • And most of us don't do it well.

  • Welcome to WellCast! We took a viewer suggestion for this week's episodeThe art of note-taking.

  • We're going to give you a three-step method for taking notes that will actually help you learn.

  • Numerous studies over the years have proven what's already pretty obvious.

  • People who take notes remember the material better than those who don't.

  • But how much better?

  • A 1970s' study by developmental psychologist Michael Howe found the students were seven times more likely to remember facts one week after hearing them if they took notes.

  • But here's the thing, most people don't know how to take notes.

  • We're taught from a very young age that when a teacher starts delivering a load of information...

  • For example: "Shakespeare described Romeo and Juliet's love as star-crossed..."

  • That we should start writing down as much what they're saying as possible.

  • Well, this is an incredibly inefficient way to take notes.

  • Why? You're not actually learning anything.

  • You're simply acting as a human audio recorder.

  • A recorder by the way that only picks up one out of every ten words.

  • And you're saving the learning for later when you'll have an even less complete lesson plan to look over.

  • Note-taking should actually act as a form of learning.

  • Something that helps you work your way through the lesson as the teacher is giving it.

  • So that when you leave the classroom (you) already understand the concepts.

  • So how do you do that?

  • We have a three-step method for taking the kind of notes that force you to learn the material inside the classroom and not out.

  • Pause and print the sheet and put it in your binder.

  • Ready for your next class... finished? Okay let's go!

  • Step one: don't write down facts.

  • Write down conclusions.

  • Don't worry about capturing every single thing your teacher is saying.

  • Spend more time listening, trying to understand the lecture.

  • When you do start writing, format your notes as a series of questions posed by the teacher's lecture, (and then) fill in your own answers.

  • For example, question: What is the central theme in Romeo and Juliet?

  • Conclusion: More than being a tragic love story, Romeo and Juliet is about the consequences of deeply held grudges.

  • This way, you're recording the importance of what the teacher is saying and not just raw facts.

  • When you do need to include data, add only the most important points under each question.

  • This is the evidence for each question's answer.

  • Step two: use colored pens.

  • Yap that's right! This will help you remember your notes visually.

  • Also, if you establish a set template for your notes, you'll be able to take them more efficiently.

  • Write questions in red, definitions in blue, conclusions in green.

  • Step three: review your notes, don't relearn them.

  • Spend at least ten minutes organizing your notes after class.

  • Wanna test your comprehension?

  • Try teaching the material to a classmate.

  • This will be a great marker to see if you've actually learned anything.

  • Note-taking is a valuable life skill that doesn't lose its utility when you graduate.

  • Find ways to integrate note-taking in your daily life.

  • You'll soon find yourself in the exclusive and creative group of people.

  • Bring out their Moleskines at lectures, movies, and TED (Talks).

  • Alright Wellcasters, let's recap.

  • Today we learned how to take notes in a way that ensures you learn the material during class time and not after.

  • First, write down your conclusions instead of a barrage of facts.

  • Second, use your questions to make connections.

  • And third, spend 10 minutes going over these notes at the end of class.

  • And if you should choose, try going over these notes by teaching them to a classmate or friend.

  • Who was that lady?

  • Okay, did these tips help? Let us know!

  • Or if (you) have a wellness topic that you'd like it to see covered, shoot us an email.

  • We'd love to see your notes! Haha... oh man.

  • Tweet us at watchwellcast, email us at, or leave a comment down belowwe'll see you next time!

The average student takes notes at a rate of one-third of a word per second.

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How to Take Great Notes

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    Sunny Hsu posted on 2020/06/06
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