Read Learn to Read With Great Speed! Online

Authors: Michal Stawicki

Tags: #Education & Teaching, #Studying & Workbooks, #Study Guides, #Self-Help, #Time Management, #90 Minutes (44-64 Pages), #Business & Money, #Business Life

Learn to Read With Great Speed! (3 page)

BOOK: Learn to Read With Great Speed!
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Regression: conclusion

There are other, more advanced techniques for eliminating regression, but I haven't used them yet. And I'm already 10 months into my 10-minute speed reading program. They are not needed at the beginning; there is a lot of time for you to look for them later.

You can train selection on any unknown text.

Using the pointer is the simplest and most powerful speed reading technique (if you can even call it technique). It's just something we don't usually do during "ordinary" reading, but we should.

Don't worry if you read mostly from a computer screen; use the pointer for your practice sessions only, and it will impact your screen reading, too.

Super speed exercises

Those exercises are not humanly possible to execute, especially the first one, when your task is to read a little faster than your record. Even if you read 4,700 words per minute (about world record), you should exercise reading faster than that. The goal of those exercises is to strain your "reading muscle" so it can grow.

The whole single iteration of this exercise takes about 8-10 minutes.

a) for one minute, read with a speed greater than 100 words per minute than your actual record

b) for one minute, read with a speed greater than 100 words per minute than in point a)

c) for one minute, read with a speed greater than 100 words per minute than in point b)

d) for one minute, read with a speed greater than 100 words per minute than in point c)

e) for one minute, read with a speed greater than 100 words per minute than in point d)

f) for one minute, read with comprehension as fast as you can

This exercise takes about 20 minutes. I only do it on weekends, when I can organize more time for my practice sessions.

a) for one minute, read using a pointer with a speed 2,000 words per minute. Sweep the pointer every three, four, or more lines. Mark the point where you finished reading.

I used "Iliad" and "Odyssey" for this practice. I figured out that one page contains about 250 words, so I was supposed to read eight pages within a minute.

b) read again the same fragment of text as in point a), but use 4 minutes this time

c) read again the same fragment of text within 3 minutes

d) read again the same fragment of text within 2 minutes

e) read for 5 minutes in a way described in point a) from the text you marked onward (it was 40 more pages in my case)

f) for one minute read with comprehension as fast as you can

This exercise takes about 5-6 minutes.

a) start from beginning of the chapter: scan the text using the pointer; you have 4 seconds to scan each page

b) read the text scanned in point a) with the speed of 2000 words per minute

c) for one minute, read with comprehension as fast as you can

The whole single iteration of this exercise takes less than 3 minutes.

a) for one minute, read as fast as you can; don't care about comprehending what you read

b) for one minute, read with comprehension as fast as you can


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The first thing to do is to gauge your reading speed. You probably already know this after reading chapter 1.

The results you get can vary from one test to another. They are dependent not only on your level of reading skill, but also on external conditions: lighting, noise level and so on. Even your mood and the kind of text on which you are taking a test can influence the results. My reading speed varies from 360 to 510 words per minute – the difference is huge, isn't it?

I recommend that you gauge your reading speed at least once a week, ideally in the same circumstances. For example, in the morning next to the window, with a lot of sunlight. Or, you can measure it every day and take the average. I don't recommend this approach, because gauging takes time, too, and we are talking about a 10-minute program here.

If you are determined to measure your reading speed every day, I recommend using the below, approximated (and fast) method:

- count the number of words on five consecutive full lines of print. (for example, 55 words on five lines)

- divide this by 5 to get an average number of words per line. (for example, 11 words per line)

- set the timer for a minute

-read for one minute and count the number of lines (for example, 35 lines read)

- multiple the number of lines you have read by the average words per line (for example, 35*11=385 words per minute)

For more gauging methods,
visit my blog

Use easy and interesting lectures for your practices. I practice on books "I've always wanted to read, but have never had time to do it."

"Warm up" your eyes. It is supposed to sharpen your vision and activate your peripheral sight. Just trace the geometric figure or infinity symbol with your eyes alone and then switch, moving your eyes in the other direction. Experts advise to do it for one minute; I do it for 10 to 20 seconds before each practice session.

I remind you that I've tailored an intensive speed reading self-course to 10 minute practices. You can do the same with my program. For example, you can use 30 minutes for daily practices and shrink every program's stage to one month.

Stage 1. Months one to three

1. Reducing the sub-vocalization.

Check out the techniques I described in chapter 4. Try various methods, and choose the one best suited for you.

2. Super speed exercise number 1.

I recommend to practice it 1-2 times a week. Remember, use the pointer.

Stage 2. Months four to six

1. Continue the exercises for reducing the sub-vocalization.

- if you have chosen some other method, try the rhythm beating exercise once a week; it is supposed to be the most effective way to fight off sub-vocalization.

- focus on the comprehension

2. Selection exercises.

3. Super speed exercise number 2.

Stage 3. Months seven to nine.

1. Eye span training.

- Shultz tables

- eye span pyramids

2. Super speed exercise number 3.

Stage 4. Months ten to twelve.

1. Continue the eye span widening exercises.

2. Fixation training.

3. Super speed exercise number 4.

A call to action

And that's as far as my training got. Nothing fancy, is it?

You may find other good, solid advice on how to arrange your speed reading practice sessions:

- secure the proper environment: lighting, peace and quiet for your sessions

- concentrate

- sit upright

- be alone

- use the professional tools and programs

- take care of your mental attitude: realize the goal of every session and overall program, set your mind to do the exercises to the best of your abilities

- set your own goals and deadlines

All of this is fine, all is good, but there is one missing ingredient: you. All that advice can discourage you. It looks like a lot of fuss, doesn't it? You must prepare: close yourself in your private office, meditate to clear and focus your mind, and then, practice speed reading, for 19 minutes. Do you feel motivated by such a picture?

The above advice is important but not critical. You can practice in a noisy environment; you can practice with inappropriate lighting; you can practice with diminished focus; or you can be discouraged. How do I know? Well, I've been there, done that.

I'm occupied with so many projects that I have no time to arrange my speed reading practice sessions. I practice on the fly - while commuting, whenever I read something which demands less than 100% of my attention (I developed a beating habit). I can practice in a "sterile atmosphere" only on weekends, when I wake up before other family members, and I do my super speed exercises in peace and quiet.

You will fail
if you don't practice. The whole idea of this book is to show you that speed reading is not rocket science. In fact, it's quite mundane. And it's easy. Do you know Jim Rohn's definition of "easy?" It's something you can do.

And in fact, you can do it. It's just like your reading education had been aborted halfway in primary school. My 10-year-old son improved his reading speed by more than double what it had been – are your skills worse than a child’s? Ten minutes a day is enough to observe some progress within a few weeks. It's worth it. You can read more. You can spend less time on reading. You can use the saved time to play with your children, spend it with your spouse, or do whatever else you want.

So start. Persevere. Keep practicing. It will feel awkward, especially at the beginning. You won't grasp what you read on your early sessions, or on super speed exercises. Don't worry. Keep pushing. Remember, daily sustained action brings results. It's a law of nature.

Free Resources

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There are a lot of books, courses, and computer programs on the Internet regarding speed reading. Some of them advertise their services giving some free resources. And you English speakers are blessed with useful tools freely available on the Net.

While writing this booklet, I've done some research and found several amazing tools for English readers. I will also give you some links to my own resources. I can't guarantee that the tools that are not mine will be available and free forever - those are just some resources I stumbled upon during my research.

Those are not affiliate links, I don't try to sell you anything. I didn't test any paid services on the sites I linked to. I just tested some free tools and found them helpful. Below, I'll list them and comment on how you can use them.
- very useful tool for fixation training. I love its flexibility - - you can paste your own text and set a reading speed - but it projects just a few words at a time, you can't see more than a single line of text at once.

You can also use it for super speed exercises 1 and 2. Setting the reading speed makes it soooo easy.
- great tool to improve your comfort with online reading. It converts any web page into a plain, black and white nicely formatted presentation of the text. It removes all distractions - ads, links, unnecessary images, and videos.

It doesn't work perfectly - on one portal it generated the same article three times for me. You can use it as a stand-alone application or as an add-on to the Firefox browser.
- They have a whole bunch of tools there, most of them are Java-based which causes some trouble in Firefox browser.

fine tool for selection training

tool for warming up your eyes
- use it before practice if you practice in front of a computer.

vision span training on Shultz's tables
- fine tool with the element of a game; unfortunately, clicking on numbers perturbs your concentration on the center of the table.

figures for warm up exercises
- on my site; you can print it and use for offline practices; just follow the dots with your eyesight very fast in one direction, then again in  another direction.

Shultz's tables generator
- on my site; it generates random tables for offline practice. I use them for my own practices. It's not very user friendly, but it does its job. I prefer 5x5 dimensions of the tables. To generate new set of tables, just press the "back" button in the browser and press the "generate" button once again. Try different browsers and different printer settings to get an ideal size on the paper sheet.

The Stories

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I've promised you stories, so here they are. Most of mine you know from the first chapter, although I've filled in some blanks. I include my son's story, also. Nathaniel is 10 years old and had significant problems with reading. He more than doubled his reading speed within eight months.

Nathaniel's Story

At the first parent teacher meeting of the school year of 2012-2013, (18th of October 2012) I discovered that my son was neglecting his school work. Let's keep quiet about the home scene which took place after the meeting. It was too ugly to be printed ;)

Anyway, I decided to pay more attention to his learning. He hated to read. In fact, he hated it so much that we used to give him reading assignments as a punishment.

The day after the parent-teacher meeting, I gauged his reading speed. The result were very poor, even for ten years old - just 71 words per minute. He had been sub-vocalizing quite audibly, murmuring under his nose. So, we started a reading practice program. He first had to read five, then ten pages a day. I advised him to bite his tongue while reading.

We did a next test of his reading speed on the last day of October. He improved to 100 words per minute within twelve days. A 42% increase; not too bad.

At the end of November, he read 130 words per minute. I set him the goal for the end of January: 150 words per minute. But he got stuck. He was still below this boundary at the end of March.

I insisted on a technique he doesn't like - beating rhythmically while reading, as I got great results doing it rigorously. He has been doing it very unwillingly.

In the middle of April, we were preparing for another speed reading test, when I proposed:

"Use your finger as a pointer" - this is another basic technique, but I just had never mentioned it to him before. I had been focusing on eliminating his excessive sub-vocalization, neglecting other enemies of speed reading.

"OK" - he agreed hesitantly. He had never done it before.

And BAM! His result was 170 words per minute!

It was a great result.

So, we made an agreement that, from then on, I would not supervise his reading. He could read as much (or not as much) as he wanted. I scheduled the next test at the end of May, and he happily neglected his speed reading training. He trained maybe 10 times within the whole month. Every sustained action brings results, but his action was not consistent. His reading speed dived below 170 words per minute again.

The next test, on the 10th of May, didn't show any improvement, so I again made him read every day. At the end of May, he read 192 words per minute – his best results so far.

He has read all seven parts of "The Chronicles of Narnia" and four other books during the training process. That is more books than 70% of Americans, ages 16 and up, have read in 2012

BOOK: Learn to Read With Great Speed!
10.87Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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