Posted by: deerharas | August 18, 2008

Study Break

How funny to use those words!  I haven’t had the need for a study break in quite awhile.  However, over the past few days I have become intimately reacquainted with the concept.  With a Greek competency exam looming in my not so distant future, my mind is swimming with paradigms and vocab as I try and cram for the test that will determine this semester’s class schedule.

As I transition back into student mode, I’m realizing (or remembering) all my study quirks:

Quirk #1:  I cannot study at home.  This may be relatively new development, because in college I remember sitting on my bed listening to Yo-Yo Ma with Hebrew flashcards, dutifully committing obscure words to memory.  However, now I can’t seem to concentrate in my apartment.  I start to think about things I should clean up or organize, people I should call or email, general to-do list type stuff.  So this week I have tried out various study spots – the library, Starbucks, Panera – and all seem to work better than my apartment.  More expensive perhaps, but definitely more efficient.

Quirk #2:  I need noise.  Silence distracts me because it allows for prime thought wandering.  And, when little noises break the silence, they are a huge distraction.  If I’m at the library, music is a must.  Not just any music will do, however; I need “study music.”  This used to be mainly classical (Yo-Yo Ma was a fave), but over the past week I’ve begun to branch out.  Sufjan Stevens is working well at the moment.  If I can’t have music, the white noise hustle and bustle of a public place will do as long as people’s conversations aren’t too distinct … I am an avid eavesdropper.  : )

Quirk #3: I can only study about an hour and a half without a break.  I’m sure there’s some scientific study about study breaks and their usefulness to overall information retainment.  After about an hour or two, nothing seems to stick anymore and I have to move on to something else.  Like blogging.  : )  My downfall, however, lies in the lengths of said breaks.  While usually fifteen to thirty minutes would suffice, I’ll end up wasting hours under the guise of a “study break.”

Well, in the spirit of not succumbing to my downfall, I should get back to the various uses of “autos.”  Blessings, friends!

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