By Frank J. Rich
Effective managers are usually good readers. But maybe reading wasn’t a strong suit growing up, and despite the fact that you are doing well in your field, you always wanted to be a better reader. Your instincts are right. Better readers are more successful. It’s true, for a lot of reasons, but for one in particular — good readers have more information on which to make better judgments. It’s that simple.
But, how do you become a good reader? For years my children and others would pose the question to me. So, I began to consider the question more carefully. And while there are many “tools” that aid the goal of becoming a good reader, a few simple basics can make a big difference. Consider the strategies below, compiled over the years, among the tools that improve your odds at success … in anything you do — not least, reading.
#1 Determine what you want to know — First ask: Why am I reading this text? Is it with a purpose (in learning) or just for pleasure? What do I want to know after reading it? Once you know this, you can examine the text to see whether it is going to satisfy your goal.
An easy way of doing this is to look at the introduction and the chapter headings. The introduction should reveal the target audience and what the material seeks to achieve. Chapter headings provide an overall view of the structure of the subject.
Finally, ask whether the book meets your needs. Does it presume too much or too little knowledge (on the part of the reader)? If it doesn’t fit your need, find another.
#2 Determine how deeply to study the material — When you only need the shallowest knowledge of the subject, you can skim material. Read only chapter headings, introductions and summaries when this is your goal.
If you need a moderate level of information on a subject, scan the text. Here, you would read the chapter introductions and summaries in detail. You may then “speed read” the contents of chapters, selecting and understanding key words and concepts. Diagrams and graphs help at this level.
Only when you need detailed knowledge of a subject must you study the text. First skim the material to get an overview of the subject. This gives you an understanding of its structure, into which you can fit the detail gained from a full reading of the material. SQ3R is a good technique for getting a deep understanding of a text. This is the technique that follows a sequential method of examining any document, as outlined below.
Survey — Survey the document: scan the contents, introduction, chapter introductions and chapter summaries to pick up a shallow overview of the text. Form an opinion of whether it will be of any help. If it does not give you the information you want, discard it.
Question — Make a note of any questions on the subject that come to mind, or particularly interest you following your survey. Even scan the document again to see if any stand out. These questions may be considered as study goals; understanding the answers can help structure the information in your own mind.
Read — Now read the document. Read through useful sections in detail, taking care to understand all the points that are relevant. For some texts this reading may be very slow, especially when it contains a lot of dense and complicated information. While you are reading, it can help to take notes in “concept” or mind mapping format. (More on that next week)
Recall — Once you have read appropriate sections of the document, run through it in your mind several times. Isolate the core facts or the essential processes behind the subject and then see how other information fits around them.
Review — Once you have run through the exercise of recalling the information, you can move on to the stage of reviewing it. Reread the document, expand your notes, or discuss the material with colleagues. A particularly effective method of reviewing information is to teach it to someone else!
#3 Active Reading — When you are reading a document in detail, it often helps if you highlight, underline and annotate it as you go on. This emphasizes information in your mind, and helps you to review important points later. This also helps to keep your mind focused on the material and keeps it from wandering.
If active reading helps, you may want to photocopy information in more expensive texts, then read and mark the photocopies. If the benefit you get by active reading reasonably exceeds the value of the book, then the book is disposable, so don’t buy it.
#4 How to study different sorts of material — Different sorts of documents hold information in different places and in different ways. They have different depths and breadths of coverage. By understanding the layout of the material you are reading, you can extract useful information much more efficiently.
Reading Magazines and Newspapers — These tend to give a very fragmented coverage of a topical area. They typically concentrate on the most interesting and glamorous parts of a topic. This helps to sell copies! They will often ignore less interesting information that may be essential to a full understanding of a subject. Typically areas of useful information are padded out with large amounts of irrelevant waffle or with advertising.
The most effective way of getting information from magazines is to scan the contents tables or indexes and turn directly to articles of interest. If you find an article useful, then cut it out and file it in a folder specifically covering that sort of information. In this way you will build up sets of related articles that may begin to explain the subject.
Newspapers tend to be arranged in sections. If you read a paper often, you can learn quickly which sections are useful and which ones you can skip altogether.
Reading Individual Articles —Articles within newspapers and magazines tend to be of three main types:
News Articles — Here, the most important information is presented first; the information is generally less useful as the article progresses. News articles are designed to explain the key points first, followed by detail.
Opinion Pieces — Opinion articles present a point of view. Here, the most important information is contained in the introduction and the summary, with the middle of the article containing supporting arguments.
Features — These are written to provide entertainment or background on a subject. Typically the most important information is in the body of the text. If you know what you want from an article, and recognize its type, you can extract information from it quickly and efficiently.
#5 Reading “whole subject” documents — When you are reading an important document, it is easy to accept the writer’s structure of thought. This can mean that you may not notice that important information has been omitted or that irrelevant detail has been included. A good way of recognizing this is to compile your own table of contents before you open the document. You can then use this table of contents to read the document in the order that you want. You will be able to spot omissions quickly. This is why left margin subtitles with right margin text make easy reading of this kind of material.
Background This project developed out of a need for easy access to playground equipment as a way to encourage physical activity in secondary school children.
Basic Science & Philosophy Exertion leads to accomplishment. Things not ventured are not gained. The natural urge to accomplish and fit in is more easily satisfied with simple exercise and equipment. Not everyone is a natural athlete, but most find acceptable levels of athleticism when exercise is cooperative and fun, such as pushing a merry-go-round and jumping on to join others in the accomplishment.
#6 Using glossaries with technical documents — If you are reading large amounts of difficult technical material, it may be useful to photocopy or compile a glossary. Keep this beside you as you read. It will probably also be useful to note down the key concepts in your own words and refer to them when necessary, again using “concept” mapping — a good study method for students.
Whatever your need or desire for reading, good readers are made, not born. Give it a try. If you do, I’m betting that you’ll be reading more success in your tealeaves.
The Carmel High School Drama Club is deep in rehearsal for Thornton Wilder’s The Matchmaker. Julie Daza and Anthony Velez, under the guidance of the club’s Drama Advisor, Margaret Carey, direct this classic comedy. Wilder’s uproarious farce about love and money stars the irrepressible busybody, Dolly Gallagher Levi (Alieyah Brown), who inspired the Broadway musical, Hello, Dolly! Through Dolly’s subtle machinations, several unlikely couples come together to find happiness in 19th-century New York.
The talented cast of Carmel High School students includes Benjamin Antoniuk, Morgan Argentieri, Alieyah Brown, Franchesca Cabrera, Mariana Daza, Allison Devane, Julia Field , Jen Gerace, Matthew Gianfransico , Jake Groundwater, Ben Hitchcock, Lauren Hoffmann, Hannah Loughran, Ayden Mallegol, Ashlyn Manfro,, William Meyers, Olivia Murillo, Stephanie Ogbebor, Madeline Olsen, Amanda Purr, Jimmy Purr, Melissa Rice, Allison Sanel, Beck Spears, Ashley Suppa, Angelina Trongone, and Caelyn Tuffy.
CHS Senior Lydia Rubin is the Stage Manager for the student crew Meaghan Connors, Tiffany Duch, Adam Friedman, Autumn Laughlin, Emily Medina, Tessa Price, Kayleigh Ravert, Clark Rubin, and Meg Young.
Take a trip to nineteenth-century New York and meet the cast of characters including the curmudgeon, Horace Vandergelder, his clerks, several lovely ladies, waiters of a fancy restaurant and, of course, the irrepressible, Dolly Levi.
The Matchmaker performances will be held on Friday, November 9 @ 7:30PM and Saturday, November 10 @ 2:00PM and 7:30PM at Carmel High School, Casey Hall 30 Fair Street, Carmel NY. Advanced tickets are available online at http://carmeldramaclub.weebly.com
“The Matchmaker” is presented by special arrangement with SAMUEL FRENCH, INC.
November 14 Master Networks Mixer to be held at Moonlight Café in Brewster
The Brewster-Carmel Chapter of Master Networks invites you to attend their November 14 Mixer at Moonlight Café 850 Route 22 in Brewster from 6-9pm. Moonlight Cafe is a “relaxed food joint” with a newly opened bar. They have a variety of food & beverages available for purchase including vegan options, desserts. kombucha & nitro coffee. Enjoy live music by Riley Krisch while you network with like-minded individuals.
Learn how Master Networks can grow your business through building relationships and enjoy a great evening of conversation and connection.
For more information contact:
CoachGlo at 914.204.1703
Laurie Spens at LSpens@comcast.net
Margaret Carey at MargaretC@HamletHub.com
About Master Networks, Inc.
Master Networks is a cutting-edge training, development and referral network. Chapters meet weekly for pragmatic, hands-on training that can be applied to members’ businesses. Members also agree to refer business to one another every week. For more information, visit www.masternetworksnyct.com
By Evelyn J. Mocbeichel
It is fun to see homes all decked out in both Halloween and autumn décor, signaling the end of one season and the start of another. For young children, Halloween excitement surrounding both fun and CANDY is building whether they go trick-or-treating or attend parties.
It is up to parents and caregivers to be extra vigilant when it comes to keeping children safe during these festivities. It goes without saying that an adult should accompany young children when they go trick-or-treating. Some towns organize parades or Halloween parties sponsored by civic groups or school organizations. These are also fun for children, eliminating the need to go door-to-door. However, if your child will be going out on Halloween night, here are some tips from the U.S. Government General Services Administration and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission that parents should keep in mind.
When shopping for a costume, try to coax your child into choosing a brightly colored costume that is visible and that will make it easier for cars to see them on dark roads. For darker colored costumes, stick some reflective tape on the costume to increase visibility. Also put tape on the tote bags they are using to hold their candy. Make sure they are carrying a flashlight or glow stick. Use face paint instead of a mask that might obstruct their view. Before the holiday, test all makeup to insure the child is not allergic to its ingredients. Avoid costumes that are below their shoe line or have flowing capes or skirts that might cause them to trip. Make sure your child’s Halloween costume is flame resistant in the event a cape or part of the costume does come in contact with a flame. (Some homes might have candles inside of carved pumpkins on the front porch or steps.)
It is tempting for children to eat the treats they are receiving along the way, but try to advise them not to do this. Discard any candy that looks opened or partially unwrapped or contains homemade goods if you do not personally know the giver. It seems such a shame to discard homemade items, but it’s better to err on the side of safety rather than worry about wasting food.
Perhaps an even better option might be to give out gift certificates. Some fast food establishments offer really low cost coupon booklets with coupons for free cones, cookies or small burgers. This is a smart marketing idea, as the restaurants know that parents will also come and order a meal for themselves or older children when they hand in the Halloween coupon for a free item.
While on the subject of checking the treats children receive, parents of very young children should remove items that contain choking hazards such as gum, peanuts, hard candies or small toys before the child gets hold of them.
Pedestrian safety is vital and children should be cautioned against running out between parked cars or across lawns and yards where ornaments, furniture, clotheslines or lawn sprinklers present dangers. Sturdy shoes or sneakers are a must, and mommy’s high heels should be avoided for little girls’ dress-up costumes.
Wishing everyone a safe, fun and Happy Halloween!
Study finds drinking more milk growing up is associated with increased height at 17
(Family Features) Drinking real dairy milk is especially important for growing kids, and new research suggests regularly drinking more milk throughout childhood is associated with an increase in teenage height, according to a new study in “The Journal of Nutrition.”[i]
Researchers followed more than 700 kids from the time they were born, analyzing their height and diet from ages 2-17, and found each additional glass of milk kids drank per day throughout childhood increased their height at age 17 by around 0.39 centimeters. That means the more milk kids drank regularly growing up, the taller they were. Water and other beverages, including 100 percent juice and sugar-sweetened beverages, didn’t have the same effect.
These findings add to a growing body of research that suggests regularly drinking milk during the growing years is associated with greater height in the teen years, while regularly skipping milk or drinking non-dairy milk alternatives, like almond or soy milk, is linked to shorter height.[ii],[iii],[iv]
The 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommend two cups of milk and milk products each day for kids ages 2-3, two and a half cups each day for kids 4-8 and three cups each day for kids 9-18. While it’s hard for kids to get nutrients they need to grow strong without milk in their diets, eighty-five percent of Americans fall short of these daily recommendations, which includes most children over 3 years old.[v],[vi]
Serving an eight-ounce glass of milk alongside meals or snacks is an easy way to give kids nine essential nutrients, including high-quality protein, and get them closer to these recommendations. Try pairing these homemade cereal bars from Jamielyn Nye, author of iheartnaptime.net, with a cold glass of milk for an easy after-school snack, and find more kid-approved recipes at pourmoremilk.com.
Homemade Cereal Bars
Recipe courtesy of Jamielyn Nye, author of iheartnaptime.net, on behalf of Milk Life
1/2 cup peanut butter
1/2 cup honey
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
3 1/2 cups dry cereal
Line 8-by-8-inch pan with parchment paper and set aside.
In a medium size sauce pan, combine peanut butter and honey and cook 3 minutes, stirring occasionally. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla.
Add in dry cereal and stir until completely coated then press into lined pan. Use piece of parchment paper to press firmly down on bars.
Refrigerate bars 1 hour, or until ready to serve.
Serve with eight-ounce glass of milk.
Nutritional information per serving: 180 calories; 4 1/2 g fat; 1 g saturated fat; 5 mg cholesterol; 10 g protein; 26 g carbohydrates; 1 g fiber; 160 mg sodium; 306 mg calcium (30% of daily value). Nutrition figures include an eight-ounce glass of fat free milk.
[i] Marshall TA, Curtis AM, Cavanaugh JE, Warren JJ, Levy SM. Higher longitudinal milk intakes are associated with increased height in a birth cohort followed for 17 years. The Journal of Nutrition. 2018;148(7):1144-1149.
[ii] Wiley AS. Does milk make children grow? Releationships between milk consumption and height in NHANES 1999-2002. American Journal of Human Biology. 2005;17(4):425-441.
[iii] Rockell JEP, Williams SM, Taylor RW, Grant AM, Jones IE, Goulding A. Two-year changes in bone and body composition in young children with a history of prolonged milk avoidance. Osteoporosis International. 2005;16(9):1016-1023.
[iv] Morency M, Birken CS, Lebovic G, Chen Y, L’Abbé M, Lee GJ, Maguire JL and the TARGet Kids! Collaboration. Association between noncow milk beverage consumption and childhood height. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2017;106(2):597-602.
[v] Krebs-Smith SM, Guenther PM, Subar AF, Kirkpatrick SI, Dodd KW. Americans do not meet federal dietary recommendations. The Journal of Nutrition. 2010;140:1832-1838.
[vi] U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Dietary Guidelines for Americans, 2015. 8th Edition, 2015.