How you can create a pleasant learning atmosphere – that and more, you will learn here!
Learning is stupid, isn’t it?
When most people hear the word “learning”, they immediately think of cramming for exams. And unfortunately, this thought is often filled with negative feelings.
“Studying is tiring, boring, and keeps you from doing things you’d actually much rather be doing.” Such thought processes are not uncommon among students! Unfortunately! Because by doing so, you only make it harder on yourself!
Being in a “learning mood”
Maybe you have already experienced it yourself: If you are in a good mood, if you are interested in the subject matter or maybe you have just had a sense of achievement, learning becomes much easier. If, on the other hand, you feel bad, angry, sad or stressed, it often takes much longer to really memorize the material.
It is easy to explain why this is so: Our brain stores information that is associated with positive feelings faster and more effectively than content to which we have no emotional connection at all. Negative emotions (e.g. fear or stress) can slow down the storage process.
If you take this fact into account, you can make learning much easier! But, how do you manage to be in a “good” mood while learning?
First of all, it is important to reconsider your own attitude towards “learning”. As mentioned earlier, many people immediately think only of school material when they hear the word “learning”. But “learning” is much more! Everything you can do and everything you know, you have learned at some point!
As a toddler you learned how to walk, later how to hold cutlery and probably even later how to eat a hamburger – also how to turn on a PC, download music or make friends! Maybe you even know the names of all the players on your favorite team, the resume of your favorite star, or every line of your favorite song by heart! All this you have learned!
As you can see, learning is anything but pointless. If you combine it with things you like to do, it can even be fun!
Now, of course, you may be wondering what sense you are supposed to find in mathematical formulas or classical literature. Ask this question to a mathematician or a German teacher and they will probably present many passionate arguments why just their subject is incredibly exciting and important. And this passion is probably exactly why they have so much expertise in their field! They learn “along the way” and without much effort, precisely because it interests them and they enjoy it. Probably they even occupy themselves with their field of expertise in their free time and thus constantly learn more. Just like you learn the rules of different games or the names of different soccer players without really being aware of it.
You don’t necessarily have to be enthusiastic about everything!
We have good news: to make learning easier, you don’t necessarily have to be “burning” with passion. It’s also enough to see a “little” purpose in it or just be curious. Have you ever thought about where the word curiosity comes from? Actually, it means “to be greedy for something new”! Most people are curious, and it’s a trait that’s incredibly useful in learning, because it creates just the right starting point for acquiring new info and wanting to understand things!
Which subject areas we find useful depends on our personality and preferences. Very few people find all areas and subjects interesting. That doesn’t matter, because the sense you need to learn “easier” can also be quite simple: “I’m learning these math formulas now to get the homework done faster and not to be afraid of the next schoolwork.”
- Create a “pleasant learning atmosphere”.
- Think about WHERE, WHEN and HOW you personally learn best.
- Try to be as open as possible to the subject matter and consciously push negative thoughts aside, because they hinder your learning.
- Think about what you already know about the subject. Where can you tie in? Where are there connections to other subjects?
- Get an overview! Summarize in a few sentences what you want to learn today!
- Make sure you have enough light, air, fluids (to drink) and provide yourself with “brain food” (e.g. nuts).
- Try to appeal to several senses at the same time! You are learning the rivers in Europe? Put a map on the floor and follow the course of the river with your finger as you repeat the countries the river runs through!
- Take breaks where you do something that has nothing to do with the subject matter!
- Maybe you have the urge to move!? Exercise improves oxygenation! And that in turn makes learning easier!
- Repeat what you have learned! Repetition is the be-all and end-all of learning, because it’s the only way to permanently store what you’ve learned in your brain.
- Give yourself feedback! Check quite soon if what you have memorized is correct!
- Summarize! Especially if you are learning several subjects at the same time, it is important to conclude the learning unit with a short summary (in your head or in writing). Summarize in a few sentences what you have just learned!
Have you perhaps had any experiences in your free time that are related to the subject area?
If you take a closer look at our everyday life, you will realize how much physics, chemistry, biology, but also mathematics, history or German you are confronted with every day, even outside of school. If you manage to establish connections between the subject matter and personal experiences, you will remember the information much easier and, above all, longer!
Things you have no influence on
No matter how motivated you are – sometimes it is impossible to create a positive learning atmosphere for yourself. For example, because parents put pressure on you or you have difficulties with a teacher. In such cases, it is often necessary to first solve these problems and improve the environmental conditions!
For further help and support — Speak with a licensed therapist today.