Resources and References
THE SCIENCE OF LEARNING TO LEARN
Quiz. Regarding quiz question number one, finger tracing provides benefits because of embodied cognition. As evidence, see Paul Ginns et al, “Learning by Tracing Worked Examples,” Applied Cognitive Psychology 30, no.2, (2015). Claire M. Barlow, Richard P. Jolley and Jenny L. Hallam, “Drawings as Memory Aids: Optimizing the Drawing Method to Facilitate Young Children’s Recall,” Applied Cognitive Psychology 25, no. 3 (2011): 480–87. doi:10.1002/acp.1716. See Sian Beilock, How the Body Knows Its Mind: The Surprising Power of the Physical Environment to Influence How You Think and Feel, New York: Atria Books, Simon & Schuster Inc., 2015) for finger dexterity citation.
Regarding quiz question number two, see the work of Immordino-Yang,. For instance, Immordino-Yang, Mary Helen, and Kurt W. Fischer. “Neuroscience Bases of Learning.” International Encyclopedia of Education, 3rd Edn. Oxford: Elsevier, 2010, 310–16. Also helpful is Immordino-Yang, M. H., J. A. Christodoulou, and V. Singh. “Rest Is Not Idleness: Implications of the Brain’s Default Mode for Human Development and Education.” Perspectives on Psychological Science 7, no. 4 (July 1, 2012): 352–64.
Regarding quiz question number three, there's lots of evidence of connection between academic skills and physical ones. As an example, see "The Relationship Between Cognitive and Physical Performance: MacArthur Studies of Successful Aging," which is online here.
Resources. Any steps to reduce stress and anxiety can improve learning. So consider everything from working out to mediation to just good-old naps. When it comes to producing a quiet sort of focus, I've long been devoted Headspace, which offers quick ten minute meditation sessions.
When you're studying, be sure to find a place that's calm. It doesn't matter if it's the library or your house, be sure to turn off the phone and music and computer. If you want to learn more about Marc Brackett's work on emotions and learning, take a look at his talk at Google. He gives a lot of good advice about managing emotions.
For the emotional side of learning, I relied on Helen Immordio-Yang's work, including for the language around emotion serving as a "bedrook" for learning. See for instance, Mary Helen Immordino-Yang and Matthias Faeth,”The Role of Emotion and Skilled Intuition in Learning, “in Mind, Brain & Education, ed. David Sousa (2010). Also see M.H. Immordino-Yang, J. A. Christodoulou, and V. Singh, “Rest Is Not Idleness: Implications of the Brain’s Default Mode for Human Development and Education,” Perspectives on Psychological Science 7, no. 4 (2012): 352–64. doi: 10.1177/1745691612447308.
The details about Elliot come from Antonio R. Damasio, Descartes' Error: Emotion, Reason and the Human Brain (New York: Random House, 2006).
For the studies on embodied cognition, see Fantoni, Carlo, and Walter Gerbino. "Body actions change the appearance of facial expressions." PloS one 9, no. 9 (2014): e108211, Zheng, Xue, Ryan Fehr, Kenneth Tai, Jayanth Narayanan, and Michele J. Gelfand. "The Unburdening Effects of Forgiveness Effects on Slant Perception and Jumping Height." Social Psychological and Personality Science 6, no. 4 (2015): 431-438, and Chandler, Jesse, and Norbert Schwarz. "How extending your middle finger affects your perception of others: Learned movements influence concept accessibility." Journal of Experimental Social Psychology 45, no. 1 (2009): 123-128.
For the details on Fitibit, see Joshua Kim, “9 Things We Learn About Learning From Fitbit” Inside Higher Ed, January 6, 2013, https://www.insidehighered.com/blogs/technology-and-learning/9-things-we-learn-about-learning-fitbit (accessed September 15, 2016).