Metamemory Edition 1
Here are a few exciting strategies and ideas that some of our schools are using to help students learn and remember. These work best in conjunction with the other 6 Principles – modelling, explanations, metacognition and strong subject knowledge help develop processes and understanding in the first place, while questioning and feedback to feedforward give students the information they need to develop and improve.
“As teachers, we must start with the assumption that our students will forget what they have learned unless we take deliberate steps to help them remember.” – Peps McCrea, Memorable Teaching
1. Metamemory and curriculum planning – spaced practice
Has your curriculum been planned to ensure students are supported to learn and memorise the most salient points? See this example from Rochester Grammar School to help you consider how retrieval can be structured into your schemes of learning.
2. Retrieval Practice
This is a great Knowledge Bank with tips and reminders for all you need to know about retrieval practice – essential techniques to support students with recall and to strengthen memory.
3. Knowledge Banks
Don’t forget the knowledge banks! A brilliant tool to help students know the key information they need to remember for your subject or topic. Faded retrieval helps students to identify where there might be gaps. Once students know more, they can do more with the information and learn more as they build on this knowledge. Here are some lovely examples from Holcombe Grammar School.
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4. Metamemory and digital tools
‘Mind the Gap! and Give me 5’
Learners at Cedar and New Horizons are recapping prior learning at the start of lessons with questions requiring recall of previously taught content, and using this context to anchor the learning to come. Quizzes on Forms at the end of the topic are then used to inform personalised interventions on SeeSaw.
These examples from Penhale Infant School and Newbridge Junior School show how teachers are incorporating quizzing and a range of activities to support recall and memory as well as disciplinary – strategies which work on SeeSaw as well as on return to the classroom, all the way from EYFS through to year 6.
This Drive Team Recommends newsletter from The Victory Academy gives some simple suggestions for incorporating metamemory strategies and retrieval into your remote teaching practice, as well as when back in the classroom:
5. It’s too difficult…!
With thanks to Plymouth High School for Girls for these motivational reminders for students about why retrieval practice is good for you.
6. The Learning Scientists
If you haven’t encountered The Learning Scientists before, I’d strongly recommend them. They describe themselves as ‘Cognitive psychological scientists interested in research on education’ whose ‘main research focus is on the science of learning’. Their goal is to ‘make scientific research on learning more accessible…’
Their website is a fantastic resource for teachers, parents and students. They even have an 8 minute video on how to revise (properly!) which I think should be required viewing for all learners. The website is worth exploring.
7. Additional reading: Cognitive Science v Neuroscience: retrieval at the start of a lesson or not?
For those of you who are not on TeacherTapp, this short blog provides an interesting commentary on a recently published article and considers its implication for teaching practice. Cognitive Science v Neuroscience: retrieval at the start of a lesson or not? – Peer Reviewed Education Blog