How to read faster and understanding what you read

Read Faster

Autumn is the time of the return to routine, to classes if we are still students no longer read for pleasure, but by obligation. And there, sometimes we would be like the robot ‘Short’ and read us three books in five minutes, but our brain does not work that way. Although he can be trained to read faster and to understand what they read, which is the great crux of the matter. Because reading very fast and not learn anything, in the end, it is as if we knew not read.

It is considered that the average read speed is between 200 and 300 words per minute, but for each individual may be different. Not only will depend on how accustomed we are to read, whether we do it in our mother tongue or another, whether the vocabulary used is familiar or unknown, whether around us there are external factors that distract us … also depend what our eyes are trained to read.

Read Faster
Image Source: Google Image

The eye is slower than the brain

“The ideal would be able to read as fast as the thought arises. This is always much faster than the process of visual perception.” A method for improving the reading that includes techniques for students, especially, learns to read faster. Understanding eyes are much slower reading of what is the brain processing that information, so just “distracted”.

When we read, our eyes do not follow the text on an ongoing basis, but they do jumps (called “eye breaks”) and pausing (called “eye breaks”). Will also stop at attachment points in reading blocks of meaning, can be a word, a group of words or a whole sentence. The more attachment points are made, the slower the reading, the more interruptions will flow information to the brain and understanding of the text will be worse.

The “trick”, therefore, is to train the eye to perform more fluid movements when reading, so do not stop both the fixing points but slow speed of reading:

“Normally the slow reader, reading at 150 to 200 words per minute, about or read out loud the words, or what is doing mentally during the course of reading, has a bad habit of reading extremely difficult things: on the one hand, reduces the reading speed, with the consequent loss of time, and secondly, ensures a misunderstanding of thought expressed in the text, as the slow reading, “word for word” breaks into small pieces thinking, which makes it impossible or extremely difficult, grasp globally in its fluid becoming.”

A higher reading speed is associated with better reading comprehension, and finding that faster reading, the goal is to understand whole sentences, not being stuck in single words. But before we give advice on how we can read more quickly, we will find out whether we are fast or slow readers.

What kind of reader are you?

Are you a bookworm as Rory Gilmore and you get two different books to read on the subway? To find out if you can be the Usain Bolt of readers there are tricks that can guide you on your reading speed. What is usually done is take a reference text, for example, the eclipse of superlunary a few weeks ago:

A total eclipse of superluna consists of two phenomena. On the one hand, there is a full moon at perigee, i.e. the natural satellite closest point to Earth. The orbit of the Moon is not round at all and when it reaches the close position, is 14% larger than normal. This is what is known as superlunary.

On the other hand, we have a lunar eclipse or what is the same: when Earth lies in between the sun and the moon so that our planet blocks the light reaching the satellite. In solar eclipses is reversed: the Moon who gets in between and we create those pretty pictures where we see how stands for a few moments before the sun.

During a lunar eclipse the satellite passes through the shadow of the Earth. It consists of two parts: the umbra and penumbra. In the penumbra it will be seen as the Moon enters and leaves the absolute darkness that is the umbra because in the latter the light does not come. So when the satellite begins to hide in the lunar eclipse will give you the feeling that fades and gradually it will fade.

According go the Moon approaching the umbra, from Earth we see that when it will reappear with a very intense ocher and red. This is known as blood moon, a rare phenomenon that was related to superstitions and legends around the world. Today science has explained precisely why it occurs.

We have the words of the text, which in this case is 280, and we timed what it took to read. Then we divide the number of words per second that has led us reading them, and multiply the result by 60. Therefore, we get the number of words per minute we read, that if they are between 100 and 200, are a slow speed, between 200 and 300, the mean, and above 400, a fast speed.

You may also like to read another article on BlogsMujer: Why time seems to pass faster when we get older?

How to read faster

We know if we are the Corrections reading, or if we want to improve our reading speed, so now we can find techniques or tips to help us get there. The good reader, who vocalizes and is able to capture three or more words with a single glance, can grasp the meaning of the words supported by the context, so the fast reader can read very quickly without endangering the perfect interpretation of the words and understanding the text , and is a skill you can learn and train.

The first thing you usually do is try to eliminate the “vices” or bad habits that we have developed to read, and that slow us. We must find out what things we prevent rapid and efficient reading. “Our bad reading habits (vocals, sub vocalization, excessive fixations, kicks, etc.) must be discovered and eradicated. Visual method is a specialized eye and brain training program that can quintuple speed and reading comprehension “and consisting of three levels: Mentor 1, which improves the working text decoding eye fixations; Mentor 2, which improves reading comprehension through reading operations, and Mentor 3, which improves retention through mnemonics.

Of course, there are also apps and tools that help increase our reading speed, as Spritz, and tested a few months ago, but we will stay with these “analog” techniques, as it were, that we can implement all the days. For example, it is recommended not pronounce the words softly while we read and avoid re-reading passages that we finish reading. We must also try to develop a broad spectrum of vision in reading, i.e. reading several grouped words, and to use a guide to force our eyes to follow, and prevent jump back and go pausing.

Felipe Bernal, creator of ’21 method reading errors you should never commit to read faster with good understanding and how to fix ‘, says a technique to read faster based on fewer fixations: “it is best to try to reduce the number fixations with which we read. A normal reader performs many fixations as blank spaces between words (…). A quick reader mentally divide each line into holder that is comfortable”.

“Read words are a useless practice and a serious hindrance to the true reading. Do not ever read words, let alone move forward in our reading word by word, morosely. In fact our vision is able to capture sets of words, two, three or even more with proper training and of these, only its image globally.”

Some tips for quick reading

It is customary to find exercises and tricks of various kinds to go implementing a faster read speed , which are then accompanied by some questions about the text you have read to determine if we have understood, or if we have simply seen words, without understand its meaning. We can, for example, include incomplete words in a sentence, to force us to look at a group of them to understand.

Another option is to cover with a sheet of words, leaving only the top visible. It allows us to make what is called “spatial reading” because our brain is able to “fill in” the missing information and identify those words and concepts, seeing only the top half.

What is sought is that we capture the ideas of the text, rather than words. We can force us to read faster, but at first did not understand completely the text, using a card with a hole in the middle, we just let them see a line of the text. We’re going down with a certain rhythm, and slightly higher than our usual speed reading, to go forcing us to reduce the fixings, to get an overall picture of the sentence rather than focusing on individual words.

Fast reading and the modern world

You may ask us what we need to learn to read faster, without losing the ability to understand the text.

“We live in the Age of the Knowledge Society, a society immersed in technology and digital content, where access to knowledge is universal and digital written communication is immediate and without borders. All this is opening a gap in learning, speed to which I must learn is spreading exponentially the speed at which I can learn. “

Internet has widened the gap increasing and if a professional wants to continue training and keeping up with news of their work, but to find and read a lot of information not have left. The skill of reading is developed through primary education, reached maturity at this stage (about 10-11 years) since, usually, the reading technique is not perfected more. The adult increases vocabulary and understanding of complex issues, but not the amount of information you can read. However, the amount of information a person must read, for professional and personal development, it does increase throughout life. This gap between what I can and must read motivates learning deficits.