notebooks

The Note Taking #KeysToSuccess

One major #KeytoSuccess in school and beyond is taking effective notes. Sounds like a simple task, right? Wrong. Oftentimes our teachers and professors speak too quickly, making it a challenge to take down everything they’re saying. Other times they provide us with information that is actually unnecessary for the purpose of succeeding in the course but we write it down anyway. So, how do we strike the perfect balance between writing down everything and writing down nothing at all? This blog post will let you know how to beat this common pitfall and help you learn much more about effective note taking! Here’s to crushing school with TMG (again)!

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  1. The Beginning Stages

Every note is the opportunity for a new, beautiful beginning. Each page is the chance to perfect your skills while simultaneously making the page dazzle with new information. Step one to taking effective notes is to start off every note on a new page with the date and page number. Keeping track of your notes via the date will help you know the chronological order of course content so that when it comes time for that test you know exactly where to look for the material.

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2. Highlight, highlight, highlight

The best thing to highlight first on your page is the title of your note. Doing so signals to you what the subject of the note is and helps you to begin to organize the other information on the page. By writing down and highlighting the title of your note you will get a sense of what information you should and should not include on the rest of your page, you will begin to ask yourself: is this information relevant to the subject’s title? Pro tip: don’t think that the only thing you should highlight is the title—key terms, relevant problems and quotations are also fair game.

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3. Rewrite Your Notes

The best way to retain information is to re-write your notes (preferably by hand), after class. Rewriting your notes in your own words is also a plus–you are synthesizing the information given to you by someone else and translating it in a way that allows YOU to BEST understand it. This strategy to note taking also helps to prepare you for any future evaluations because you will have already studied for an upcoming test while perfecting the scribbles that you may have written down in class.

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4. Create Your Own Code

Teachers and professors can often speak quickly and provide you with too much information to write down. Creating your own short forms will help you take notes in a faster, shorter and condensed manner that will not compromise the note’s quality. You can even have some FUN while making your own shorthand by creating a language that is unique to you—stars, arrows, abbreviations and more are all elements of solid short form creation.

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5. Don’t Stress!

Just because the teacher or professor is talking, doesn’t mean that you have to be writing. Rather than copying down all information given, taking note of definitions, facts, enumerated lists, charts and information repeated or written on the chalkboard can be considered useful. Don’t get too hung up over your note-taking abilities—effective note taking is a skill that, like anything, will develop over time. For now, focus on following TMG’s tips to help get you started taking effective notes.

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Back to School - The IT List

If you tuned into our last blog post, you’ll have seen that we provided you with style inspo courtesy of our fave fictional characters. So this week, we thought we’d bring things back to IRL and give you some must-have Back-to-School items you can actually get your hands on. il_570xn-1073516593_4vhm

Backpack Pins

Want to give your backpack or pencil case a little boost? Add some decorative pins! There are literally endless options of cute pins on Etsy.com (just search “Backpack Pins”) but we love these ones with one of our fave slogans “You Do You”! If you’re feeling a little craftier, you could also buy badges and sew them onto your backpacks.

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Fun Laptop Cases

For all our students who carry laptops from class to class, we LOVE these laptop cases from zazzle.com . They’ve got you covered for every personality, from wacky animal memes, to more simple and sweet designs. If you're into something a little simpler, Herschel sells less embellished cases in variety of colours. Find one that suits you, and keep your laptop safe and stylish!

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Sleek Water Bottles

Who knew a water bottle could ever be sexy? You might have noticed that S’Well bottles were popping up everywhere this summer, and we can see why! These stainless steel bottles can keep your drinks both hot and cold, and come in tons of different colours and patterns. You all know how important hydration is to keep your brain sharp, so having a water bottle on hand will keep you sipping away all day.

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Academic Agenda

This one’s kind of obvious, but if you don’t already have one then definitely go out and grab it. Agendas/Planners/Calendars are SUPER useful in keeping tracks of all your projects, tests and assignments. We know the ones the schools give out can sometimes be a little drab, so maybe invest in a different one if you think it will motivate you to use it more!

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Yummy “Fall” Tea

We don’t want you going broke on Pumpkin Spice Lattes, so we think a delicious tea is the perfect alternative. Buy this box of Tazo Chai Pumpkin Spice tea from Starbucks to get you excited for fall, and back into positive study habits!