Tips for Taking Notes Effectively and Constructively in Class

Tips for Taking Notes Effectively and Constructively in Class | Rice Psychology Group in Tampa Florida

Consider the following story as it relates to this topic.

Sarah came home with a note from her teacher saying she’d have to serve a day of detention because she hadn’t been taking notes during class. This is the same teacher who constantly tells me that Sarah is such a bright and gifted student; literally one of her best. I spoke to Sarah, but she told me that she just simply doesn’t know how to properly take notes. Is there anything I can do to help her?

Note-taking has always been a big part of schoolwork. Do you remember how difficult it was to take the right notes during a lecture? Note-taking is extremely important for studying and retaining lessons, even if the student taking them is gifted. If you want to equip your child with a necessary tool to reach success, then Rice Psychology Group has the help you need.

The Importance

Tips for Taking Notes Effectively and Constructively in Class | Rice Psychology Group in Tampa Florida

According to the State of Florida, a gifted child is one who has superior intellectual development and is capable of high performance. These children are:

  • Able to learn quickly
  • Think outside the box
  • Frequently delve into different interests a bit more than their peers

Yet, despite a gifted child’s amazing abilities, they can definitely benefit from the power of effective note-taking.

According to Susan Kruger, M.Ed., a note-taking ability is a predictor of success in school. It helps students retain the information passed onto them by instructors or read in their textbooks.

This translates into a gifted child’s already impressive mental capacity being enhanced well into their years in high school, college, and beyond. Additionally, effective note-taking can provide an easy-to-use study guide that can properly prepare a student while giving him/her the peace of mind that only preparedness can provide.

How to do It

Tips for Taking Notes Effectively and Constructively in Class | Rice Psychology Group in Tampa Florida

One of the biggest issues in writing notes is our desire to write everything down, which is impossible considering just how much a teacher talks during a lecture. To begin, we must teach children to keep their notes brief.

“Only write down key words and main ideas,” advised Kruger, denouncing the need for “helping” words in notes. Once this main idea is understood, students can move on to the other steps that make note-taking effective and efficient:

  • Peek at the Material Beforehand – Even if the teacher has yet to officially assign specific reading assignments, it’s never a bad idea to get to know some of the material before a lecture. Previewing material is one of the best ways to boost note-taking; simply being familiar with the vocabulary alone can help organize notes.
  • Pay Attention – Hearing is not the same as listening. That is to say, students should pay attention to whatever the teacher says and how he/she is saying it. If a teacher becomes animated with a certain topic or writes it down on the board, chances are it’s very important.
  • Visuals Matter – Whether you are circling words, adding arrows, or literally drawing pictures, visuals can be the best supplement for the words you’ve written.
  • Consider a Specific Method The Cornell Note-Taking System is a popular five-step approach to taking good notes. It involves dividing the note paper into two columns. After taking concise notes in class on the right-hand side, use the left-hand column to create questions that “clarify meanings, reveal relationships, establish continuity, and strengthen memory. Also, the writing of questions sets up a perfect stage for exam-studying.” The additional steps are reciting, reflecting, and reviewing.

Here for You

Your gifted child is your priority, which is something we keep in mind at all times at Rice Psychology Group. Whether your child is having problems at his/her school, or if you’re looking for a way to better understand them, know that our Tampa psychologists are here to help. For more information about our services, contact us in Tampa today.

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