How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where, and Why It Happens

How We Learn: The Surprising Truth About When, Where, and Why It Happens
By Benedict Grey

I thought I’d dabble in a new area of learning this one about memory and learning. It took me a while to work through this book. I didn’t find it incredibly interesting, though interesting enough to make me finish it. I also have been pretty busy with life so that caused some slow reading too.

Highlights from the book:

  • Yet we work more effectively, scientists have found, when we continually alter our study routines and abandon any “dedicated space” in favor of varied locations. Sticking to one learning ritual, in other words, slows us down.

  • In short, it is not that there is a right way and wrong way to learn. It’s that there are different strategies, each uniquely suited to capturing a particular type of information. A good hunter tailors the trap to the prey.

  • “If we remembered everything, we should on most occasions be as ill off as if we remembered nothing.”

  • “We not only tend to forget what we have once remembered,”

  • “but we also tend to remember what we have once forgotten.”

  • Writing long books is a laborious and impoverishing act of foolishness: expanding in five hundred pages an idea that could be perfectly explained in a few minutes. A better procedure is to pretend that those books already exist and to offer a summary, a commentary.”

  • “Having drunk a pint of beer at luncheon—beer is a sedative to the brain and my afternoons are the least intellectual portion of my life—I would go out for a walk of two or three hours. As I went along, thinking of nothing in particular, only looking at things around me following the progress of the seasons, there

  • Being lost is not necessarily the end of the line, then. Just as often, it’s a beginning.