Listen | Take Notes | Participate | Read the Books!
This approach can be summarized in four simple points:
- I don't know if you have ever heard that there is a difference between hearing and listening, but after taking the Human Sit, this concept has never been truer. When a person hears, they are simply using their ability to perceive sound. Words, phrases, information goes in one ear and out the other. When a person listens, they are actively participating. Not just perceiving sound, but taking it and making something of it. That is when you can analyze, draw conclusions, and be part of the Human Sit. experience. This does not include time used gaming or passing notes in lecture. That is not listening. It may be the fun part, but not the productive one.
- This little gem definitely saved my skin not only on all my papers, but on my midterm and final as well. As an incoming freshman, you may think, "Awesome! College! No more spirals, binders, or reams of loose-leaf paper. I don't need to take notes anymore. Anything that is important I will just remember, right?" Wrong. Note-taking is an integral part of surviving this literary jungle. You never know what random analogies or obscure statements can inspire your papers or become their driving arguments. The same goes for seemingly meaningless words and phrases. If at any point, something catches you off guard because it sounds antiquated, different or just plain wrong write it down. You never know what could be a question on the midterm (one word: mooncalf).
- The best way to ensure your rapt attention during lecture and, especially, discussion is to sit close to the professors. Now, if you already haven't found this out, let me warn you that you are basically sticking a big, red target on your forehead. But, don't worry about that. You will learn so much more this way. Debating with the professors builds a sense of rapport and gives them a face and personality to put with the names in their grade books. Also, because it is easier for them to make eye contact with you, you immediately have the upper hand for when you want to answer or ask questions, bring up points of interest, and basically make your opinion known. This may not be a good thing if you don't always (or ever) know what you are talking about or if you are an attention hog. But, I've always found that I learn the most when I am teaching others.
Read the books!
- If you don't your grades will drop, and you will fail.
- The teachers won't like you.
- You won't be able to participate.
- You will fail.
- No fun discussion times outside class.
- No bonding with other students over how much you hate Paris and Aphrodite.
- You will fail.
- No learning.
- No knowledge.
- Loss of entire Human Sit experience.
- Ultimately, epic fail.