Beginning and ending a study session is very helpful. Priming can be motivating because it gives you a clearer picture of an entire set of ideas and how they’re applied in the real world.
When in doubt do some priming. Skim around and do brief overviews of anything related to, “ahead” or “behind” where you are now with the goal of understanding the full context of what you’re studying. Priming is also good when you don’t have a lot of time or are just too tired to get into an in-depth study session.
Cognitive researchers say that by priming material you are giving your brain a chance to establish small footholds that you’ll later use to connect to more detailed networks of knowledge. The more footholds you have to connect your knowledge to, the stronger the synapses between the neurons that hold the new knowledge will be – which means you attain expert knowledge stronger and faster.
In addition, by priming you give yourself extra time to rest and digest the information a little bit at a time, which in turn, helps meaning-making of new ideas.
Prime learning several books at a once, as apposed to, sequentially learning the material in detail gives a huge time savings advantage. Priming several sources gives you a “working knowledge” of the material which you can instantly apply to whatever portion you’re currently learning in detail – which helps cement the understand with fewer repetitions.
*Teaching with the Brain in Mind by Eric Jensen