Do you know that all of us share a powerful technique with top performers from all walks of life? CEOs, successful entrepreneurs or athletes use this technique to define their goals. We’ll let you into a little secret – the technique is called VISUALISATION.
Do you remember the time when your parents said they were bringing you to McDonald’s for a Happy Meal - what came to your mind? What about “homework” – do you associate the word with a mental image?
Since you have been practising this technique for years, it should not be difficult to use visualisation when learning Science. And it is not just for the student with a visual preference or a vivid imagination.
Visualisation is the skill of forming an image or picture in your mind. You can always put it into action by converting wordy science questions into pictures and graphs.
Here, we will share the top 3 reasons why visualisation is a powerful technique when learning Science. After all, to do Science, you need a little imagination.
1. Appreciate abstract concepts
Your Chemistry teacher has vehemently insisted that air particles are all around us. Well, the problem is, you can’t see them!
If you can visualise how the tiny air particles are arranged, you may be able to understand better why compressed nitrogen tanks are more commonly heard of than compressed metal slabs.
How about that time you feel like your eardrums are going to burst when you dive to the bottom of the deep pool?
Well, if you can almost ‘see’ the amount of pool water above you, you would be able to appreciate that the weight of all that water is exerting a high pressure on your tiny eardrums.
2. Summarise concepts for a quick revision
A few students had told me that mind maps were useless!
In truth, they are - if you mess them up. Keep mind maps simple with these two words in mind - RELEVANCY and ASSOCIATION.
Remove words like ‘the’, ‘an’ unless absolutely necessary. Use relevant connecting phrases, keywords and images. Colours are optional.
For a mind map to represent nutrition in humans, you can use blue to represent main regions of the alimentary canal and green for enzymes. Mind maps are useful for that quick scan before the big exam to “digest” key concepts.
3. Simplify questions and Score in Science
Don’t Physics teachers love questions on Newton’s Laws as applied to cranes and rockets?
If you can simplify the problem as a free-body diagram using only one shape and a few arrows to represent forces, solving such a question will be a breeze.
Answering a 5-mark question to describe the intake of water by plants? Don’t fret. Put your visualisation skills to good use. Jotting down points as you ‘see’ the path of water from the soil solution through the root hairs and up the plant means you won’t miss out the important details.
The bottom line
While visualization may seem like new-age hype, there’s a plethora of scientific evidence and research that supports its effectiveness. The brain is a very flexible organ. It is constantly growing and expanding.
When you learn something new – e.g. treading water or stopping yourself from falling down when rollerblading – you make an imprint in your brain, i.e., you make a memory. The more often you repeat or practice the task, the stronger the imprint becomes and the easier it is to recall. What the brain is not able to do, however, is distinguish whether you are physically experiencing something or simply imagining it.
Ready to get started and use this technique in your Science learning journey? Keep us updated on how you fare, and this works for you!
Looking for more education-related resources? Please sign up for our newsletter below and regularly visit our blog page for mind-stretching education tips. For more information on how you can get study help for your studies, please visit our us online or at any of our 22 centres islandwide.
Mind Stretcher is a well-known and popular tuition & enrichment chain with an A* track record. Since its genesis in 2002, we have helped and inspired over 150,000 students in their education journey. Click here to find out why we are the education partner of choice for so many parents and students. Please contact us if you have any queries.