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Last updated at 12:52 BST, Thursday, 16 May 2013

Sleeping for learning

A student in an exam

More sleep could mean better exam results.

How much can you learn when you're tired?

New research has proved that not getting enough sleep – or sleep deprivation – can have a negative effect on a student's performance at school.

In this week's 6 Minute English, Rob and Finn discuss why this is a particular problem in wealthier countries and explore some sleep related language.

This week's question:

Randy Gardner holds the world record for the longest period of time without sleep in 1965.

Do you know how long he stayed awake for? Was it:

a) 5 days

b) 8 days

c) 11 days

Listen to the programme to find out the answer.


Sleeping for learning

End of Section


sleep deprivation

not getting enough sleep

getting their heads down

going to sleep


lacking in energy

forty winks

a brief and light sleep

to run on empty

to continue working when you have no energy or enthusiasm

hit the sack

go to bed

mood swings

regular changes in how you feel or behave

a siesta

a short sleep after lunch (particularly in hot countries)

to turn in

to go to bed


grumpy, unhappy



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