While there are many people who love reading, there may be some who cannot extract everything from what they read. Comprehension of what you read is the more difficult, yet more important part of this habit. There are numerous things you can do to better understand the material that you intend to read.
When you go through the reading material, there would be some things that you will not really understand. What you should do is to read that specific section aloud. Some people may find this tip funny, but it actually works. If you hear those sentences, there is a greater possibility that you will be able to comprehend what the author is trying to convey. If you are hesitant to do this around people, then try setting your reading sessions in a private and a quite place. This will help in maintaining your concentration while at the same time will allow you to read your material aloud. In addition, reading in a very noisy environment will affect your comprehension. Distractions will divert your attention from what you are actually reading.
If the first step doesn’t work, list down those words that you come across and do not understand. Always maintain the habit of having a dictionary by your side when reading. With this, those difficult words can easily be looked up in the dictionary in order to find out their meanings. There are people who have made the habit of listing down those unfamiliar words and then checking them from time to time which obviously widens their vocabulary. So now if you’ll encounter the same word next time in a different reading material, chances are that you won’t be needing a dictionary this time and you will not have the problem understanding it and the context on which it is used.
The next step is thoroughly and extensively reading your material instead of just skimming through it. This may sound absurd but many people do it to quickly complete the material. While reading, you may also use a pencil so that you can underline the main ideas in each paragraph. You may also jot down notes ideally on the margin so you can easily find and revise them later. If there are questions that may arise, also write them down. Asking these questions to yourself will help you better comprehend what the material is trying to convey. This will help you understand what is going on in that book that you are reading.
After you are done reading, make a reflection of what you have read. You should try to think and remember everything that you were able to understand. For those points that you feel are very important, check on all the notes that you were able to jot down. Skim through the pages with the notes so that you are sure you do not miss any information. The notes and what you have learned can actually be expanded by sharing it with others who have already completed the material. You can discuss it with other people and share insights that may help in further understanding the content.