Aim Higher: The Achieve Blog


Pete discusses the importance of taking good notes in class. No matter the subject, taking effective notes is necessary for success. For humanities classes such as history or English, it is important to paraphrase and condense what the teacher is saying in order to get the information into the brain. For math classes, it is important to note down formulas and problems and to jot down explanatory notes. Pete also encourages students to try using Cornell Notes, which are a great way to organize notes. Lastly, he recommends avoiding cramming, as it is not an effective studying technique.


[0:00:04]   In today’s lesson, we’re going to talk about good note taking in class. Now, I’m going to assume that you’re going to class and not skipping because that’s step number one in actually taking good notes, showing up in class. But note taking is kind of a lost skill. I’ve noticed with a lot of our students that since the pandemic hit, note taking has fallen off the the board completely. People did not take very good notes during the pandemic when they were learning online for a year, and so they lost some of that skill.

[0:00:33]   So note taking is really important in all of your classes. It doesn’t matter whether it’s math or science or history or English, taking good, solid notes in class is fantastic. So what are good notes, right?

[0:00:45]   So to some extent, that depends on the material. For humanities classes, history, English literature, paraphrasing and condensing what your teacher is saying in your own words, in your own language, is really important. Part of the reason is it forces your brain to understand what the teacher is saying so that you can paraphrase things in your own words and write them down. And that helps get that information into your brain.

[0:01:11]   For math classes, it might be writing down problems, but pointing out, putting little notes with arrows, hey, in this step, you need to do this. Or in this step, I often forget to do this. Jotting down those little explanatory notes. Really important. Obviously, you want to keep any formulas down in your notes and make sure you highlight them. And what I would recommend, if you haven’t tried it, try doing Cornell Notes for some of those humanities classes.

[0:01:36]   You can even do it [Cornell Notes] for math and science as well. A Cornell Note is a really interesting process. I’m not going to go into it in depth here because there are so many good online tutorials about taking Cornell Notes. So just take a look at Cornell Notes online and see if that’s something that you think would be effective for you. [Actually, I did make a video on Cornell Notes, so check it out]. All right, in our next session, we’re going to talk about why cramming doesn’t work very well and what to do instead of cramming.

[0:02:00]  Thank you for watching. And for more information you can go to our website for more videos in our blog or subscribe to our YouTube or Instagram feeds. And don’t forget, Aim Higher!

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