Transcript - AI Generated
Introduction and Purpose of Distributed Practice
[0:19] Well hey again, this is our third one for the week, how exciting that we're actually getting this done.
I'm excited that I managed to get three out in a week, it's a lot of extra work.
But I've told you I would have been working on my effectiveness improving what I'm doing So that I can actually help you improve what you're doing as well.
So today we're heading into The idea of using what's called distributed practice, right?
So in one of the courses that I used to teach we used to talk teach students about you know How they do training programs and all that kind of stuff and we would say, you know But one of the things that to learn was what's better is it is mass practice better or distributed practice better and so distributed practice is.
Explanation of Distributed Practice vs Mass Practice
[1:03] Basically when you spread things out over time, right?
So rather than doing math practices today We're going to spend, you know, the whole period today with your class, right?
We're going to go over and we're going to rehearse Multiplication and so you spend all day doing multiplication with the class or maybe today in class we're going to practise coming up with you know analysing persuasive texts or whatever and so they get you know a few short texts and they're just constantly analysing and they're practising that skill in a large kind of process type thing and so for a lot of subjects.
[1:38] That could be, you know, learning a particular topic but doing the same topic over and over and over again.
And it's how often we do the prep for our students coming up for exams, for example.
So if we have a test coming up, we might, you know, the day before or the weeks before, give the students a mass set of time where they get to study going into that.
And so distributed practice is the opposite of that, essentially.
We're going to spread things out rather than doing a large amount of time all at once, Distributed practice is about doing little bits of time Lots more frequently right and so distributed practice is a learning strategy that involves breaking up studying Right particularly the revision stuff into multiple sessions spaced out over time rather than large one large Bulk of sessions right so if you're going to do a revision, session with your students, if you set aside like whole periods for revision or if you set aside whole days maybe during the holidays of revision that's actually not going to be the most helpful thing for your students.
Benefits and Examples of Implementing Distributed Practice
[2:43] It is going to be way better for them to have it spaced out because research has shown us that distributed practice is more effective than mass practice for long-term learning and memory retention.
[2:57] Okay that's about frequency not about the amount that you do.
So you can actually do less, you can spend less time but do it more frequently and get way better results than if you did it once for longer.
And so for example we have our one period where we're going to do some revision on Friday afternoon or what it could be Friday morning whatever right but we have one period it goes for hour maybe goes for hour and a half we're do revision for that time.
[3:23] Versus, let's say it's an hour, I can do 10 minutes every day or every time I have a lesson with them I'm going to spend 10 minutes doing the same revision.
Okay so this whole hour here gets spread out across five days it's actually now 50 minutes so 10 minutes less but your students will have way better retention of what they've learnt because of that.
So you're putting less time into the revision but doing it more frequently.
And that has a massive benefit for your students when it comes to their recall of memory, when it comes to them being able to understand it, being able to utilize and apply their knowledge.
Because they've stored it into long-term memory it allows them for better recall and then they can apply it and do the deeper thinking more easily because it's sitting there in their long-term memory.
And so distributed practice allows for better memory consolidation, better memory retrieval, and that leads to improved long-term learning for your students.
[4:28] Let's talk about some examples of implementing distributive practice in your classroom.
Hopefully you kind of get it. It's very like, it's kind of a space repetition type thing, right?
So space repetition is when you, you know, I learn something on Monday, I'll revise it again on Tuesday, I'll then revise it on Thursday, I'll revise it on Thursday next week, then I'm going to revise it next month and then next term, right?
The space between your revisions gets spread out further.
So distributed practice is basically going to apply a space repetition process throughout but you're going to be doing revision of some kind every day and that can be for last lesson, it could be for a month ago, it can be for this week, last week, right?
[5:10] And even bringing things together and doing questions from different topics even as part of your revision would be helpful in this kind of distributed practice process.
Anyway, examples of distributed practice. So one I love to use is flashcards, right?
So get the students to create flashcards and Creating it could be done as one of your sessions So you might spend 10 minutes creating flashcards and then the next week next day you're gonna do 10 minutes Going over those flashcards and getting the kids to remember them Okay Or you can have the students throughout their normal lessons right rather than writing summaries or something You could have them write flashcards and then have various times where you just like it Okay guys only spends five minutes or ten minutes right now Pick up your pile of flashcards that you don't know start going over them and that's a quick and easy way of putting in some revision frequently.
[6:01] Another thing is to do review sessions, so maybe you do a session where it goes for 10 minutes or 15 minutes, right?
But these are shorter periods of time spread out in each of your classes or something.
But a revision session maybe where you're going to be talking and you might explain this to students or you might have the students explain it to each other, which would be even better because that forces them to be able to recall the information, which is super important for this whole distributed practice thing is that the students are the ones who are trying to remember it and then trying to find the answers and stuff within that 10 minutes.
[6:31] I talked about spaced repetition techniques, so we're gonna use those and spread them out and so have the students actually repeat something a few times and then space that out to the next one and so you weave that into your distributed practice.
[6:43] We have lots and lots of different ways of practicing things so you could do classroom quizzes, you can do flashcards, you can do some online quiz, you can do some five minute brain dump, you can do some presentation or something, like there's lots of different ways is that you can start to get them doing that.
You could decide that you're gonna do some group concept mapping.
[7:04] And so when they come into class, maybe you go, all right, guys, I want you in groups.
You get 10 minutes, timer, right? If you've listened to the last episode, put a timer up, right, here's our 10 minutes.
In your group, I want you just to brainstorm the stuff that we learned yesterday, because we're gonna use that again today for what we're doing.
But you also need to make a connection between what we did yesterday and what we did two weeks ago.
And so they then get into their groups and they've got this little scaffolding thing that they're filling in or something but they're doing some concept mapping basically as a group.
You know peer teaching sessions where the kids are sitting next to each other and teaching each other something that they actually have already learnt as a process of revision.
You could have some interactive quizzes and games happening so maybe at the beginning of the class, alright for 10 minutes we are going to you know and might have a bunch of questions on some slides.
We're going to play a game like a quiz host game whatever they call it I can't remember what they're called a quiz show a game show that's the word a game show, right? We're gonna play a game show.
Here's some questions, you guys have to answer it. Call out on your buzzers, right? Who can remember what?
That's another way that you can start to embed this kind of distributed practice.
You can have the kids write in reflective journals frequently.
So maybe every week you're gonna have the students stop at the end of the week, spend 10, maybe 15 minutes writing in a journal, thinking about what they learnt, from the lessons in your class this week.
[8:22] What do they connect with, with what they've learnt last week, so they could read back through their journal a little bit if they can't remember, then go, oh, it links with that, oh yeah, it links with this, and they're writing things down as a reflective process, but that also is building in that distributed practice because they're thinking about what they learnt and recalling that information.
Simulations and Role-play for Classroom Engagement
[8:42] We can also do some simulations or role-play activities if we like, so depending on what is happening in your classroom, we go on, you know, as a way of remembering what we read about in Shakespeare, we're now gonna spend 10 minutes, right?
You guys get to pair up and see what you can remember reenact scenes, Together well, maybe you might need three or four depends on how many characters in a scene, right? But you could say alright guys in these small groups.
He's just straight away, right? Just you've got ten minutes to get through the scene.
Okay, remember this one or remember that one off you go Give it a go or maybe you know do some role-playing, So maybe you're teaching first aid type stuff and so you're gonna have the students actually practice some first aid You guys are coming guys Every one of you has either a broken arm, a broken leg, a sprained ankle, or maybe you've hurt your fingers or something, I want you to apply first aid to each other.
You've got 10 minutes to sort out your first aid and look after each other. Right, and off they go.
Great, quick role-playing revision process for how do they deal with hard and soft tissue injuries or something.
Various Activities for Effective Learning and Revision
[9:45] You can do some interviews with people, right? You can decide to space out over the week.
You know, I'm gonna spend 10 minutes with this student, 10 minutes with that student, 10 minutes with that student, And you can kind of schedule that into your lesson plans throughout the week so that you're hitting different students across the week using this process.
[10:02] But you might embed that throughout other processes as well.
You can get the students to do puzzles right you can say all right, I've done this before Particularly in where I am with like the syllabus so the students need to be able to remember particular parts of the syllabus match up With other parts as they answer questions and so often we'll cut it up and we'll have the kids kind of jigsaw it back together.
[10:24] And they've got to work it out or you could do a similar thing with a text that they've been reading and you can go right here's the text but you're only getting you know a few lines of the text and they've got to put the those lines in the right order for what they've read or maybe there you've given them an essay that's arguing a particular point and they've got to work out the best way to put this essay together so you're gonna give them sentences for example and they're going to work out you know what should be at the beginning what should be in the middle you know which are the key conjunctions maybe they're gonna have to stick the conjunctions in the right spots to make sure it's a persuasive argument and not just you know a fluffy low-level piece of writing.
[11:04] So you can take those puzzles and make them you know lots of fun and very different.
You could do gallery walks you can have the students actually have things that they bring in and go alright guys I want you next tomorrow for the first 10 minutes we're gonna do a gallery walk make sure you bring in your summary of this or maybe your brainstorming map or your mind map of this concept and we're going to put them up around the room and you're going to all walk around have a look at each other's work and you can all then revise stuff together by going through this gallery walk or you can have students teach throughout that gallery walk and then swap over.
That might take a bit longer but you can use that quite regularly on a kind of simple process.
I quite like to using like a jigsaw activity in the classroom where the students might have learned something on their own but then you're like okay next week when you come in you're going to teach each other something and then we're going to space because then that students getting it spaced out right so that and that could be just by context.
Implementing Distributed Practice for Long-term Learning
[12:00] So the students might be learning a particular skill or go and apply it in their own context, but then they've got to come, you know, and so they're in groups working on applying it in one context and then these groups all come together, one person from each group into the jigsaw group and each person in that group is going to teach the other one how they applied it in their context.
And so that's revision but revision in application as well and so that's a really cool way to do some distributed practice as well.
And my final idea for you is like a self-assessment checklist And so you can have the students actually use a checklist to check what they know, what they don't know.
It could be against some criteria. It could be a reflection using criteria or using goals or something where they're checking off and go, oh yes, I've learned that, I've learned that, I need to work on this.
Maybe they're rating themselves out of five or something in terms of how well they know things.
And identify to the student what they might need to work on.
It helps you to know that too, but also gives them a chance to reflect and to see what they remember and you're distributing out the practice as they are doing this kind of revision process.
[13:01] And so distributed practice doing small amounts regularly is way better for our students long-term learning and their memory retention all that kind of stuff their ability to apply and to go to that deeper thinking skills.
By embedding distributed practice throughout your lesson plans and your units of work you are setting your students up for greater success in their learning and you're helping them to become lifelong learners as they go forward too because they start to go okay I need to make sure I revise stuff that I want to stick in my head okay so when I read a book and I might take notes on that book I'm then not just ignoring things I might then the next day try and remember what did I read in the last chapter right I might flick through and have a quick look at the highlights after I try and remember it and go yeah okay I think I've remembered everything before I read the next chapter.
[13:51] We learn these processes of how to stick things into our long-term memory here at school and I would encourage you to really embed some distributed practice.
If you had planned to give two weeks at the end of term or something for your students to be studying before an exam don't do that.
Take that study and stick it and spread it out instead and do a little bit each week or do a even less every lesson and you can really help your students then to cement it not just for their exams but long-term, into next year and the year after and the year after as well.
[14:26] Well let me know how it goes I hope you enjoy that. Remember if you haven't subscribed to be getting notified about the podcast please do that you can probably just hit the subscribe button on your phone or something if you really want but if you want to be getting emails from me about the podcast to remind you and yeah I'll probably will share other things with you as well.
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Anyway I will chat to you again next week that's three for this week looking forward to doing three again next week.