June 2 2016

I Love Steno The Student Edition: How Relaxation Helps Your Memory

When your body feels stress, it releases the hormone cortisol. When your cortisol levels are high, your memory is adversely affected. High stress levels are accompanied by lowered concentration levels, and a lowered ability to retain and recall information. Therefore, take a deep breath and try to be as relaxed as possible while you are testing and practicing. This will help to get your brain working for you instead of against you. Relaxation is key.

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January 14 2016

Theory Thursday: Words Ending in -TH- Part 1

To denote words ending with -th, I use an *T.

Here are some briefs:

bath= BA*T
beneath= BAO*ENT or NAOE*TH
bequeath= QAO*ET
berth= B*ERT
billionth= B_LT
birth= B*IRT
births= B*IRTS
birthed= B*IRTD
Bluetooth= BL*UT or BLAO*T
tooth= TAO*TH
booth= BAO*TH
both= BO*T or BO*ET
breadth= BRED/*T or BRA*ED
breath= BR*ET
broth= BRO*T
cheth= KH*ET
cloth= KLO*T
cometh= KO*MT
couth= KO*UT or KAO*UT
cruth= KRAO*UT

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September 3 2015

I Love Steno: The Student Edition- Great Practice For Theory Students!

A great way for theory and low-speed students to practice is to write to “Learn to Speak English” audio recordings and videos. This is such a great way to practice because the speakers are usually speaking at a fairly slow and steady pace due to the fact that they are trying to teach someone to speak a new language (just like us learning steno). Also, the speakers are usually using vocabulary that is on the basic or intermediate level- just what you need as a newcomer to steno.

There are also great “Learn English” videos that contain conversations between people. This is a great resource for students who are just becoming acquainted with Q & A.

You Tube is my favorite place to access “Learn English” videos. Here are some channel names and links you can visit:

Learn English Conversation: https://www.youtube.com/user/englishlearnspeak/videos

Learn English Fast 1: https://www.youtube.com/user/LearnEnglishFast1/videos

BBC Learning English: https://www.youtube.com/user/bbclearningenglish/videos

Pod English: https://www.youtube.com/user/podEnglish/videos

Speak English With Mister Duncan: https://www.youtube.com/user/duncaninchina

Simple English Videos: https://www.youtube.com/user/vickihollettvideo/videos

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August 13 2015

I Love Steno: The Student Edition: The Earlier You Figure Out How To Write “And,” The Better

The sooner you figure out how you will write the word “and” on your machine, the better. Like most high frequency words, it is beneficial to be able to phrase, “and.” [NOTE: An Oxford study has "and" listed as the 5th most frequently used word.]

When I was taught theory, I was taught to write the word “and” on the machine as AND. In countless hours of practice, I wrote AND without being able to phrase it, due to its being comprised of the final -D stroke. It wasn’t until I finished 8 months of theory and a number of months in low-level speed classes that I discovered writing “and,” SKP-. This method allows for phrasing of the oft-heard word.

It was difficult for me to change the way I wrote “and” after being accustomed to stroking the word out as a lone word. As it is said, “practice makes permanent.” However, I saw a great benefit in amending the way I wrote the word. Phrasing would allow me to eliminate a stroke and quicken my writing.

Due to the immense effort that it takes to amend a mentally solidified stroke, the sooner you figure out how to write your words, particulary high-frequency words, the better off you will be in terms of speed advancement.

Check back tomorrow for Friday Phrases, part 1 of “and phrases.” I currently have over 500 “and phrases” in my dictionary I would like to share. Also, please note that you should use phrasing as you see fit.

Love, Speed and Accuracy,


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July 17 2015

I Love Steno The Student Edition: The Importance Of Practicing The Right Way

Here’s a quote from Michael Jordan regarding basketball; however, this quote can also easily be applied to stenography too:

“You can practice shooting eight hours a day, but if your technique is wrong, then all you become is very good at shooting the wrong way. Get the fundamentals down and the level of everything you do will rise.” -Michael Jordan

Love, Speed & Accuracy,

Elsie Villega

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