“unless you actively flex your neurons, nothing much happens in your head. A reader has to be motivated, engaged, curious, and inspired to solve problems, draw conclusions, and generate new knowledge. And for that, you need challenges, exercises, and thought-provoking questions, and activities that involve both sides of the brain and multiple senses.”
From “Head First” series of books. I love the Intro section where they talk about using an informal style, touching emotions and other ways to engage learners.
If you really want to learn, and you want to learn more quickly and more deeply, pay attention to how you pay attention. Think about how you think. Learn how you learn.
We can use some of these ideas to engage students in face to face interactions in class as well. Instead of delivering long lectures that put them in a listening (or sleeping) mode, it may be good to provoke them into thinking and kindle their curiosity to learn more.