Saturday, June 02, 2007

Study Time

People often get the mistaken impression that by simply sending a child to SAT prep courses or intensive study courses, in any subject, that somehow, magically, the child will show significant improvements in performance. The problem is that 1 or 2 hours of intensive study per week cannot substitute for 1 or 2 hours of intensive study over an extended period of time.

The child may show some improvement if he/she studies 1 or 2 hours per week but, if you desire your child to show significant improvement, he/she must study intensely everyday. In addition your child should strive to improve their study technique in comparison to the previous day. They should strive to understand more or understand things more deeply, they should strive to identify their weak spots and work on them until they become strong. They should strive to understand the logic behind the subject, to understand the subject from a broader perspective, and finally they should strive to improve the very way they improve their study technique.

As you well know sports is my favorite analogy; how can you expect to become a better baseball, soccer, or tennis player if you only practice intensely 1 or 2 hours a week? Also, when you do practice you don't practice with the intent of practicing better than you did last time? Eventually you will reach a plateau of performance that has nothing to do with genes or talent. The only way to break through that "wall" is by pushing yourself to be better than you were last time, to constantly seek ways to practice better, and finally to realize that practicing intensely everyday yields far better results than practicing intensely once or twice a week.


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