Hi everyone and welcome to the effective teaching podcast. Today, we're going to continue our mini-series in applying how students learn today. We're looking at the biggest influence on what students can learn, it's going to be a great episode. I really want you to hang around, right to the end and give you lots of tips for how to do this in your classroom.
But before we do this, let's try. And remember what last week's episode was about? Can you just take a moment? Think back to the last episode. I've said 102 when we began this miniseries. What was the topic that we started?
And that's right. If you remembered it is retrieval and that's why I actually did this right now is that I wanted you to try and recall the information from last week when we were talking about putting in retrieval and just by thinking, back to the last week and we're calling that information.
Hopefully, you will also start to remember the five strategies that they gave you to apply this into your classroom, Take a moment. Just give it a go and ask if you can come up with any of the strategies I gave you in our last episode by yourself. And I'll give you the answers in a sec.
So hopefully you got number one which was for you to actually stop reviewing last week's lesson at the beginning of your lesson and instead start to ask students questions to get them to write down or think about what they learnt in the last lesson, forcing them to do the recall, Another strategy I gave you was to make sure you're doing low stakes quizzes.
So just doing there can be mild choice, quizzes on Stephen kids. A couple of short answer questions that they're gonna do. Quickly doesn't take a lot of time but it forces them to think back and recall stuff that they've learnt. You could do this at the beginning of a lesson to recall stuff from previous lessons at the end of a lesson to recall, what they've learnt that lesson or even a couple of days later to remember what they just learnt number three was to break up your presentations so that you actually presenting for a bit, then stopping to allow students, a chance to take notes from recall rather than as you're actually saying it or when they're looking at the writing on the board, Number four is to ask students guide and questions to answer their own questions.
So you're actually helping them to recall answers to their own questions. And the fifth strategy was to get your students to create flashcards and then give them chances to actually practise using those. So, how did you go? Did you remember those? Did you remember to keep developing your own retrieval as well and get your students to do it every lesson?
Another easy to apply strategy for recall is to not do open book anything, right? Let the students read and then close the book and then have them do activities or answer questions or take their notes. If students are teaching each other or giving presentations or answering questions and stuff, make sure that they do this without notes, right?
Force them to be doing retrieval. Will help them to remember things long term. Okay so that's out a bit of recall from our last episode and now we're going to focus on this week's topic. Remember we're looking at the biggest influencer on what our students can learn, and the biggest influencer on what our students can learn is what they already know, our memories, our ideas, I our skills and information that are all stored in our braids, they're stored.
As neurones connected to other neurones. In order to store new information, we must connect neurones to each other. That is we need to connect the new learning to an old one. We need to connect, whatever. We're learning to something we already know.
Now in reading, this is very important. We must first know the sounds before we can match them up with an image such as a letter. And then if we know the letters that are in a word, we might be able to sound it out. Obviously in English sometimes it doesn't quite work and then if we know the letters that we can practically, we can start to read right?
We need those letters. And so we need to know our prior knowledge to then build on that and we continue to build on that as we go. So we must build our knowledge, one bit at a time, and connect and construct it all together. So, if your class for your lesson, you need to go through and think about things.
So, the first thing I want you to think about is what prior knowledge. Are you going to connect the new information, you're giving your students or the new skills, you're giving your students. We're going to connect that to for them to help them, to remember it. So, lots of things there that you can think of, for your subject.
You know, what do they need to know already that you need to then build on check that they know that already and check using recall, right? Number two, have you checked the students have this prior knowledge, right? You need to make sure you're checking it. Number three, is there any knowledge?
You know they have that. You can then link the new content to even if it's not building on this content as prior knowledge, right? So it doesn't have to be, you know, they've learnt this concept in mass and then we're gonna do the next concept we match which builds up upon that.
It could be something like, you know, in maths with might do substitution in math. But you might link that to substitutions that happen in sports games. And so, you're actually connected to something else that the students know in real life. And I actually think the connections in real life, are much more concrete and helpful for your students, then necessarily always connecting things back to prior learning that they've done in the classroom.
Number four, you can, How can you start to make these connections between the old and the new explicit. So you may need to make sure these connections are really clear for our students, it'll help them to remember it. So, for example, you could write it on the board and draw lines to connect the information, You can get students to run and feel the burn in their legs from lactic acid building up.
And you could then explicitly connect that to the fatigue that's going to happen. From the lactic acid energy system, which is that you know, the asset that's building up in your body, that makes you feel that burn. So you're just trying to make sure you creating these connections between the old and the new explicit for your students, not just leaving it, there for them to make the connections.
Make the connections for them. Number five, You could and I highly recommend doing stuff like this at the beginning of a term or is beginning as you're starting a unit or something, lay out a scaffold with the connections for them. And so what I mean by this is to really do a precursor for learning and show the students the big picture of what's going on.
So they can see the big connections that are going to be made which then helps guide their learning as they go. So as they learn the newbutive information, you then zoom back out to the big picture and show those connections again and then zoom in on the detail that you're about to teach once they are learning that and then zoom back out and show them the connections, going backwards and forwards for them with their learning process that's going on and that will help them to really develop a great memory for what you're teaching them to be able to recall that information later when they need to.
And remember the best connections that you can make to our old knowledge are actually the knowledge that we have of our real world. That the students are living in Another six. I'm gonna give you six this week. You can even blend together, the idea of retrieval prior, knowledge by getting students to recall the prior knowledge from previous years, or you previous weeks of some stuff, or you can get them outside context before you make their connections explicit.
So getting them to do the recalling and get them to try and come up with the connections before you then make it explicit for them See if they can recall it and start to develop it themselves. That is really powerful when it comes to student learning. So there's a few tips for how to apply how students learn in your classroom Today.
We're looking at prior knowledge, remembering to connect anything, you're teaching the students to stuff, they already know. And in order to do that, you need to know what your students already know. So, make sure that you're finding out what your students are interested in, what their skills are, what kinds of things, they already know where they up to, with their maths.
Are they actually did, they miss stuff in year seven, and you're teaching them in your eight and you've got to go back and cover that, right? So making sure you know what, your students know can help you as a teacher to make really good connections for their measure giving them the new content.
Well, that is it for this episode, please, if you enjoyed this series, I hope you've invited other teachers, come and join you for this series. I think it's a fantastic series to do as a faculty or to do just with a partner or some just another co-worker a friend who's teaching so that you can have some good conversations about how you're going to apply this and you can chat a bit more about how you can do this with your classes at your school to really have an impact on your students.
If you enjoyed it please, I would love for you to leave me a review. Tell me what you think of the episodes. Make sure you subscribe so that you don't miss out on our next episode that's coming up episode 104. I'm going to continue to build on how students learn and how we can apply this to our classrooms.
Come and join me for that. I look forward to listening or chatting to you, really next time. Come and join me, have a lovely day and make sure that you build on prior knowledge.