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In my opinion, what makes an active learner is the initiative, creativity as well as knowing how to apply the strategies and skills in the Active learning strategies sections into practice. Above all, taking the initiative (being proactive) is important. Active learners pursue information rather than waiting passively for an instructor to “pour” information into them. They are continually involved in creative projects, self-directed learning, mindful activities, interactive discussions and multisensory ways of learning. Most people learn better from actively engaging with material than they do from passively listening to a speaker or reading from a textbook. Active learners always prepare well, because nothing beats preparation. Students with good study habits do this and have better grades than those who try to cram it all in at the last minute. They make studying a regular part of daily routine. For instance, they will read before class, review notes from the classes they have each day and look through assigned chapters from that day’s class. In addition to reading the materials, they will create questions and note main ideas. They often ask questions and participate in discussions during a lecture; highlight, take notes, do practice questions while reading a book; directly do experiments instead of just watching them and read over notes while highlighting keywords, predict test questions or think of questions to ask next class. What’s more, knowing how to apply the strategies and skills in the Active learning strategies sections (including Bloom's taxonomy, multiple intelligences, critical thinking, note-taking-mind-mapping, memorization techniques, teamwork-communication skills,…) into practice makes an active learner. Active learning strategies have students “doing” things-analyzing, creating, role playing, experiencing, reflecting…;initiate learners into effective ways and help them engage in activities based on ideas about how they learn and store new knowledge in long-term memory. In short, active learners can be described as a tree seeking out new information with their branches and engaging with it. They have an intention to learn, and choose to participate in the learning process by reaching towards new things. Active learners have been shown to have improved learning outcomes compared to passive learners. The most useful I have found in the Active learning strategies sections is Note-taking-Mind-mapping skill. “Short term memory has a very limited duration. We can remember six or seven items only as long as we give all of our attention to them”-Santiago (2004). That’s why we need note-taking skill, which means writing down ideas from lectures and reading our own words. It’s useful because it helps us improve concentration, prevent distraction, study for tests, take ownership of ideas and engage senses. Moreover, with notes, the main ideas, the secondary elements and the links among them become clear and easier to visualize. Notes can also be used to highlight missing details, inconsistencies within the speech and anything implausible that needs attention later. Thus notes play an very important part. and Mind-mapping: maximize brain’s potential; organize thoughts when brainstorming, effective method of taking notes, harnesses the full range of cortical skills: word, image, number, logic, rhythm, color and spatial awareness. We can use mind maps to take advantage of them to aid our creativity, memory, and specifically the recall of information.

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