May 2021 Edition

By Mike Ion 


Education Director


Teaching students so they will never forget

“What if understanding memory was the key to unlocking learning?”

Long-term memory is a powerhouse of human cognition, helping us to solve problems, make sense of new information and look things up. But storing things securely in long-term memory can be really hard, particularly for students who have to remember lots of new information in lots of different subjects.

What is known as ‘spaced-repetition’ is a solution to this problem. It is one of the best-evidenced findings in cognitive psychology, and makes remembering things much easier and quicker, but despite this it is not often used.

The video presentation below provides a quick overview of ‘spaced-repetition’ research and some practical advice about how you can integrate a ‘spaced-repetition’ flashcard system into your teaching and planning.

Teaching That Sticks

Why do we remember somethings better than others?

The article below was written by Chip and Dan Heath, the authors of popular books such as Made to StickSwitch and The Power of Moments. In this article they explore why ideas become sticky and how that might translate into the classroom.

Key Takeaways

  • Sticky ideas are SIMPLE and focus on the most important information. They contain “What matters most” and consciously exclude anything else.
  • UNEXPECTED ideas or experiences raise levels of curiosity and motivate students to want to know more.
  • Ideas that are made CONCRETE through the explanation of practical application or physical involvement by students seem to be more sticky.
  • Making an idea or a piece of information CREDIBLE by using facts or getting students to see or experience it is key.
  • Connecting with EMOTION during the learning process can help by attaching information to feelings which are often easier to recall than isolated knowledge.
  • Knowledge or ideas woven into STORY are particularly powerful as they trigger mental simulation and enable students to put themselves into the situation or idea.


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