Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Thinking about learning theory

Yesterday we kicked off the Fall quarter discussing NY Times article, Forget What You Know About Good Study Habits. 

After opening with neighbor check-ins over coffee and cookies, we had a recap discussion of the article's surprising conclusions,
they directly contradict much of the common wisdom about good study habits, and they have not caught on.
For instance, instead of sticking to one study location, simply alternating the room where a person studies improves retention. So does studying distinct but related skills or concepts in one sitting, rather than focusing intensely on a single thing.
The essential theme seemed to support interleaving variety in location, content, and testing.  Someone asked how this impacts block-scheduled schools, which study only one subject at a time.  This also raised several issues about how to apply these lessons in our classrooms.  

We then broke into smaller groups to workshop specific things we could learn from this and apply with our own students.  We tried group sharing by jigsaw, rotating members of a group to the next group.  Did anyone feel like that was too many transitions?  

Meanwhile, also check out the original literature on the topic:

1 comment:

  1. Yo can also listen to the interview on NPR: http://www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=130728588