This is the final post in a 3-post series on McGraw-Hill’s SmartBook. If you (still) haven’t heard about SmartBook, it is basically an interactive alternative to an ebook. In fact, it is the ONLY interactive alternative to an ebook!
SmartBook is uses 4 different techniques to enhance your learning while reading textbooks:
Preview, Read, Practice, and Recharge
Last week, I focused on the importance of previewing and (since I’m guessing that y’all can figure out the importance of reading), today’s focus is all about practicing & recharging!
These are so, so important because your brain kind of works with a “use it or lose it” type of system. We learn new things all day everyday, right? We hear new songs, read new articles, meet new people… our brains are constantly taking in new information. But do you know what our brains are also doing? They’re also constantly clearing information out to make room for new things to come in.
This is called pruning (or synaptic pruning, if you want to get scientific). And pruning is the reason you always forget that girl’s name, even though you know you’ve met her a million times! It’s why singers warn you that they might forget the words to a song they haven’t sung in a long time. And it’s why we hate cumulative finals.
The practice and recharge elements of SmartBook are designed to keep the information that you recently read from getting pruned out! By practicing what you have learned, you are deepening your understanding of the material. You are applying it and your brain is actively using that information for something!
By recharging, you are also keeping the material that you learned 4 chapters ago active! It is constantly coming back to your thoughts, being remembered, and creating a stronger foundation on which you can continue to build your knowledge!
And that is what makes SmartBook so effective! 🙂
How often do you actually read your textbook chapters now (don’t lie!)? Do you think that using an interactive textbook would keep you focused? What tips do you have for remembering old information that you’ve learned?