Am I Doing Launch School “Right”?

I have been in LS for 5 and a half months now. I am currently working my way through the Sinatra book reading application portion of the 170 curriculum, and to be perfectly honest I am disappointed with how much difficulty I have had solving the exercises. Now, this is the very first web app that I have been exposed to that is running on Rack with Sinatra, embeds Ruby into HTML with .erb files, uses helper methods and routes, etc. The list goes on. So am I just being too hard on myself? I don’t think so. Because these new tools and concepts that I am being exposed to are being fully explained, demonstrated and covered by the LS curriculum.

No, it isn’t these new things that are bothering me. What is bothering me is that I am struggling to solve problems that involve selecting and manipulating certain items out of an array of hashes. I am forgetting about standard library methods like each_with_index (embarrassing to admit, but hey I’m going full honesty here) that make solving these kinds of problems a breeze! What is going on?

I am struggling to build out the kinds of methods that were covered in 101.

Ahhhhh. Wait a minute.

CIRCULAR LEARNING

It’s funny (or should I say infuriating) how so often humans know what is the right or best way to accomplish something, and yet refuse to do it that way. It is Laziness? Fear? Giving into anxiety over self induced time constraints? Giving into anxiety over financial constraints?

The entire time I have been in LS, there has been a voice in my head saying, “Hey, you need to incorporate some kind of circular learning pattern into your everyday study sessions…” “Those green check marks mean nothing if you don’t review the material…you need to go back over some of those concepts and lessons.” And yet I continue to only move forward in the curriculum with all of my time everyday, never listening to my wiser self and going backwards to review. This is not the path to mastery. The reason for this post is simple — I am making it public that those days are over.

My New Study Routine

3 hours is generally all I can fit into a day given my current situation. From here forward I will stick to a strict new study routine:

  • 30 minutes flash cards from a previous LS course.
  • 45 minutes problem solving practice of concepts from a previous LS course.
  • 1 hour 45 minutes to current course material.

Is this going to slow down my completion of the LS curriculum? Of course. But so what? I have to embrace mastery to make this entire journey worth it any way. It is time to make some changes.