What is you learning style? Do you take notes?

What is you learning style? Do you take notes?
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#1

Hello! Im Thor from Norway. Just started Freecodecamp.org.

If your learning style is taking notes, what application are you using for notes? Do you use a wikistyle note taking app?


#2

Hi Thor, welcome to FCC.

Personally I don’t really take notes. I usually remember where I have solved a similar problem and look up that code. Next to that google is your best friend. For example there will come a lesson where you will learn about a javascript mapping function. You will learn it, understand it and move on. Then sometime later you might come across a problem where you will realize that a mapping function would be useful. You could either look into your notes which will be limited or you could just google javascript map and have access to better notes that you could ever take yourself. Ofcourse this is a personal opinion and you should do whatever you feel comfortable with.

What could be useful is having a file with links per topic. This could be useful.

Best of luck on your new journey!


#3

My learning style… I go over a very basic tutorial either on w3schools or I’d watch some basic videos just to grasp the concept and syntax of the programming language I’m trying to learn.

Thereafter I’ll use people’s code to implement what I’m trying to achieve, so that I can see how things work.

Then I try tweaking the code to see if my additions actually do anything useful. If it works, I try creating my own code using those template scripts as an example guideline.

I’m pretty much on my way by that time. After a couple weeks of reiterating and going over the same problems, I am able to successfully write my own code from scratch to work exactly as expected.

I don’t feel the need to take notes. If there is a code snippet I’d like to use someday, I save it in notepad ready to view in a browser and name it appropriately, and someday I’ll implement it in my website to avoid rewriting it myself.


#4

Welcome Thor!

I usually take notes in Markdown format in my editor then publish them on Medium. I feel I learn things better if I can explain it in my own words. You can learn Markdown format quickly if you don’t already know it. It’s worth learning eventually so you can write readme.md’s for your projects on GitHub.

I wouldn’t take notes on things like syntax since you can just Google it. However I think a meaty topic like prototypal inheritance or scope in JavaScript is worth writing about.


#5

Hi Thor!

I take a lotta notes. It is really good for reference purposes. And the information sticks with me for quite some time when I take notes. Don’t write everything down tho lol. Just the ones you think are important.


#6

i always take notes and practice makes perfect


#7

I’m a big note taker. At least for me, I find writing coding concepts and examples down in my own words super helpful in not only understanding them better but also remembering them.

As for how the notes are taken I used to write them down in a physical notebook but I’ve since switched to Evernote. I really like the interface. You basically make virtual notebooks that you can then fill with notes. Plus you can access them not only through the desktop app but also the Evernote website. Which is really cool if you need to get to your notes when you’re not near your PC.

I still look things up too, but it’s handy having a lot of info all in one place. Oh and you can totally add links to your notes in Evernote as well. Like for example I’ll link a page from MDN on a specific topic.


#8

Hey Thor, what’s up with Loki :stuck_out_tongue:

Okk, so now to answer your question…
YES YES YES
I am big on taking notes, I generally follow like,
see something -> read about it -> understand it -> if it’s a code try it -> then try doing on my own -> then check again how right/wrong I am -> then write in my own words.
I usually keep 2 big books (Yes, I still use books and pen, call me old school, but I really like it) where I try things in one book, mostly like practice, and then when I get it completely, I take things down in another book.
Also, if I have found myself coming to solutions faster when I pen down the problem and try to make a solution on paper before jumping into code, OR, i have really bad code visualization:laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing::laughing:


#9

I previously did NOT take notes, and experienced much slower retention as a result.


#10

@thorep welcome to freeCodeCamp. I think @QuincyLarson’s (the founder of FCC) suggestions are applicable here:

  1. Be consistent. Carve out 30min-1hr every day for coding. Even a day off can cause you to backslide. Imo it’s amazing how quickly you can learn when you do something every day.

  2. Surround yourself with other coders. This provides mentorship, a support system, inspiration, and, when you begin your job search, a network. This is something I’m personally working on.

Do you take notes?

I take tons of notes with Notion which has awesome code blocks, syntax highlighting, and markdown. I don’t use Evernote specifically because it has poor formatting support.

I suggest if you take notes that you take time to summarize them at the top of your note with quick, most important bullet points. At the very least, taking notes starts to codify them in long-term memory, but if you take high-quality notes, then they could be references forever.

Notes, however, are not a substitution for practicing it. I also don’t suggest just dropping links in a directory somewhere because they become less useful as they lose context over time.

Last thoughts:

  • Build tons of projects. This forces you to synthesize your knowledge into a single concept and gets you comfortable building things in the real world.

  • Figure out your best learning style. For me, the combination of code-along videos, challenges, and vigorous creation of projects helped me learn the fastest. However, I wish I could learn from technical books because they’re so affordable.

  • When you learn something new, teach it. You can do this publicly or simply write down by hand the best explanation you can as if you were writing it for another intelligent, but less skilled person.

In my experience, learning web development is learning what is possible, repeatedly exposing yourself to it, then referring to that information later when you need it. FCC addresses most of these suggestions and it continues to get better. That’s why I’m excited about it even though I’m a few years into my career.

Good luck!


@ellereeeee that’s awesome. I really need to start blogging more and putting my learning process out there.


#11

I don’t take notes because I think it’s a waste of time.

The pre-defined methods in JavaScript already have good documentation from MDN, W3Schools, and among other reference sites. If I needed to refer back to the functionality or syntax, I refer to those sites or any documentation I have. In fact, concepts solidify much more quickly when I code something which come from a problem which I came up or someone else approached me with. This is the best way I find one could learn quickly.

However, what I actually do is document. When I am working through an algorithm, I write out by hand how I would solve it manually then try to parse it into code on the screen. If I’m creating backend routes, I’m creating definitions either on paper or through a notepad file of what those endpoints are. If I come across a tool or method in a framework, I create examples in a gist or facebook post. And so on and so forth.


#12

I take notes all the time but I don’t use any apps for them. I use good old-fashioned pen and paper (yay, @phoenixabhishek!) . Later on, I type them into a simple word doc in my tablet. That gives me two different levels of working with the concepts I think are important enough to write down.


#13

@ellereeeee, your Medium is amazing! I’m going to have to follow you, because I can see some real value in your notes.