Learning comes from different methods and at a different pace.
1) Some genius reads the Stickies and understand all of it before even shooting.
2) Some or many others Read the stickies and shoot with those notes/information in mind and trying to relate it.
3) Some didn't bother reading stickies and hands on all the way and learn faster than reading those stickies.
I'm pretty sure you belong to one of it. Just follow that style you like most and start having fun with the camera.
IMO, DSLR is a camera that allows you to "customize" all kind of shots which will most probably be limited by one's creativity. Try exploring different kind of settings to get different effects (or you can also try different settings to get SAME effect). If exploring is not your type, I think u can stick to "auto" mode. *not trying to sound nasty here....but it's a fact.*