Record What You Learn


‘Record what you learn’ pattern comes from the chapter ‘Perpetual learning’ and Perpetual meaning ‘occurring repeatedly’ the pattern sits well. ‘Record What you learn’ Pattern is a perfect read after ‘Breakable Toys’ and ‘Practice, Practice, Practice…’ because the pattern exposes one the biggest flaw in our learning which is that sometimes even after learning the same lesson repeatedly “They never seem to stick.” The solution pattern provides is for us to record what we learn. Make timely organized notes in form of journals and wikis. Moreover, the notes could be public or private; public for the purposes to share your knowledge and discoveries and private where you can act as your own oversight and pinpoint all your faults with brutal honesty.

Why this pattern?

For me, ‘Record What You Learn’ is a perfect sequel to ‘Practice, Practice, Practice…’. I have written many programs in Java, but from time to time I’ll forget something specific like casting the input variables, using extends or implements in OOP. The point is this has happened to me various times until I started making personalized notes for myself instead of depending on textbooks and class notes. I started writing things down the way I understood them; using the color-coding system to my advantage, I highlighted parts that were important to remember, parts with specific steps and parts where I needed help. Classification of information not only proved to be effective for quick reviews and revise but also helped in conveying myself to people who can help me in precisely where I needed help.

Where is disagree:

Most of the time while building my personalized notes there was a lot of overlap. Classification of information was effective but the process of classifying the information itself was tedious and chaotic. As I kept learning new things, adding notes, and modifying notes became a very complicated process. Absence of space led to arrows being from the top of the page to the bottom. References were made from page 31 to page 45 which led to a whole new level of mess. Switching to taking notes on the PC solved a lot of issues from being on paper but created a lot of new ones. One issue was the mechanics of completing a task. It is much easier switching between a pen to a highlighter than a keyboard to mouse, and further selecting area to highlight.

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