There were a couple of interesting studies that caught my eye this week. The first was a neat look at how learning in one discipline can helpfully inform learning in another. This new study talks about how understanding the relationships among words can help you better master mathematical concepts. Unfortunately, this is bad news for people who don’t like word problems–it’s more evidence that they’re ultimately a good thing.
Another study out there was nice confirmation of something we intuitively know to be true: that taking breaks can help when you’re working over long periods of time. This article explores the cognitive benefits of breaking up long tasks into shorter chunks. In general, you’ll improve your focus and your performance by doing tough things like studying for a math test, writing an English paper, or reading a chapter for history if you build breaks into your workflow.