Tuesday, August 09, 2016


Author:  Benedict Carey
Genre:  Non-Fiction, Standalone
Published:  2014
Personal Rating:  2/5 (not enjoyable)
Format:  eBook
Yearly Count:  48

From NetGalley:
From an early age, it is drilled into our heads: Laziness, distraction, and ignorance are the enemies of success. We’re told that learning is all self-discipline, that we must confine ourselves to designated study areas, turn off the music, and maintain a strict ritual if we want to ace that test, memorize that presentation, or nail that piano recital.

But what if almost everything we were told about learning is wrong?

And what if there was a way to achieve more with less effort?

In How We Learn, award-winning science reporter Benedict Carey sifts through decades of education research and landmark studies to uncover the truth about how our brains absorb and retain information. What he discovers is that, from the moment we are born, we are all learning quickly, efficiently, and automatically; but in our zeal to systematize the process we have ignored valuable, naturally enjoyable learning tools like forgetting, sleeping, and daydreaming. Is a dedicated desk in a quiet room really the best way to study? Can altering your routine improve your memory? Are there times when distraction is good? Is ignorance always bad? Is repetition necessary? Carey’s search for answers to these questions yields cunning strategies that make learning more a part of our everyday lives—and less of a chore.

I usually love educational books, but I am incredibly sad to say I did not enjoy this one.  I suppose it's more about expectations than anything.  Reading 25 million studies, including numerous details of each, was not my thought going in.  Were there some interesting antidotes?  No.  Was there anything new?  No.  Not quite sure how this is new thinking or understanding, but with all the studies, this book can inform you how his questions are answered.  

Thoughts of Joy

My thanks go to Random House & NetGalley for providing me with this eGalley.

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