How to take effective notes and
remember what you have read!
• How many of you know how to take notes that you understand
later when you have to study for a test or quiz?
• How many of you review the notes you take in class when you
are doing your homework?
• How many of you understand your own handwriting?
• When you are reading your science book or your English book
how many of you actually take the time to take notes while you
• Why is all this important? Please take a few minutes and
answer the following question in your journals ---why you think
it is important?
What is the difference between reading for
yourself and reading to learn?
When you are reading for yourself you chose
the book, and most of the time you are not
required to take a quiz on the reading!
It is important to make sure that you create a
space that is helpful for reading! What does
that mean for you?
Take a few minutes to answer this question
with your teacher.
Each class that we are assigned reading has a
different purpose. For example, science classes
are different from English classes, but, they have
one thing in common, READING! Before you
dive into your assignment review your
assignment. What is the teacher asking you to
do? And what do you need to know?
Class discussions often require you to have an
overview of the text and familiarity with
important passages, but may not require the same
depth of reading or recall, remembering data, as
tests or papers. Papers or exams, which often
require a closer reading, require a more detailed
understanding of the text and greater recall
(memory). (Center for Learning)
How difficult is the text for you?
How difficult is the language (vocabulary) of
How detailed is the text?
If the text is difficult and detailed, a higher level
of concentration on your part will be needed.
(This is different for every student).
This is about you!
• How interested are you in the material?
• How much do you already know about the subject?
The higher the level of interest the easier it is to read
about it; and the opposite is true as well, the lower the
level of interest the harder it is to read about it.
It is always a good idea to flip through the assigned
reading. There are visual clues to let you know where
the subsection of a chapter are; what the important
points are –i.e. bold, underlined, or italicized print. If
you are reading a science or history book skim or read
the summary unless it is long and detailed.
Take out your science or history book and see if you can
locate some clues!
• CAREFUL or CLOSE reading- this type of reading is
important when the text is tricky and hard, or when
you are required to write about it. You want to use
close reading for digesting information.
• You can use sticky notes to help you locate the
important points and to write helpful notes about the
• When we read magazines or novels this is
called casual reading– we normally read
these texts casually. However, in your
English class you may need to use careful
reading if you find the text difficult or you
need to examine a part of the text.
• The goal of scanning is to find something quickly-
a certain piece of information from the text
• The goal of skimming is to get the gist of the
(Center for Learning)
• Create a place to read
• We need to know the why of reading– what is
the assignment , what are the expectations, and
what I need to know?
• We need to preview the reading looking for
visual clues and to get a general idea of the
language and its difficulty.
• We need to decide whether we need to closely
read or casually read!
• To review -- we can skim or scan.
Take a few minutes and think:
How do I read?
What strategies do I use?
Do I know how I read difficult books?
MORE SPECIFICS LATER!!!!