October 13, 2009
How to Eat An Elephant
Midterms are upon us, and with it the usual whining about studying, cramming, and poor time management. This is moment when those students who complain about having lives, jobs, and kids get particularly annoying, especially to their fellow students.
One of my little darlings actually shared these complaints on our discussion board, and has been getting a plethora of advice on how to study. By far my favorite has been the one entitled “How to Eat An Elephant!”
So I share with you the wisdom of that note, because it is sound studying advice: don’t try to eat an elephant whole. You have to cut it up into smaller pieces, and consume it over at least several days. You should be studying all along, not just trying to cram things in before the exam. A review is no time to learn the material, it is a time to refresh things in your mind that you have already learned. The elephant should already be skinned, deboned, and ready for the barbecue.
Otherwise, you just get indigestion. And a dislocated jaw.