Success with Inclusion: 1001 Teaching Strategies and Activities that Really Work

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They may get help putting together a project on one topic but are unable to reapply those same skills to the next assignment. The importance of memory Memory is an important part of learning, and many pupils fail in school because of poor memory. There are two main types of memory. Short-term memory is the brief storage system where information is held before it is fully processed.

Problem solving is often physical and not mental. Cannot think about their own thinking. Forgets about a toy once it is hidden. Bangs on a jigsaw puzzle to make the pieces fit. Think that what they guess is certain to be the right answer.

Level 2 4—8 years Thought is still closely tied to real-life experiences. Information from the senses has priority over ideas. Reasoning is often based on a single, sometimes irrelevant criterion. Reasoning can be unsystematic. Chooses the brightest coloured book, instead of the book that would be the most help to them in their task.

Promoting Inclusion and Identity Safety to Support College Success

Level 3 8—15 years Thought does not have to be tied to real life. Ability to select relevant criteria improves. Ability to coordinate more than one aspect of a problem increases. Language and thought can be used to replace action or real-life experiences.

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Reasoning becomes more methodical and systematic. Can talk through a plan and make decisions on probable situations that might arise. Can gather several pieces of information and work it into an organised summary. Thinking can be completely free of real-life experience. Ideas can be developed and thought about in a systematic way.


This type of memory is fragile and can easily be disrupted. If someone speaks to us before we dial, we may have to look up the number all over again.

Long-term memory is where information is stored for later retrieval. Moving information from short-term into long-term memory often takes conscious effort. Even when information is stored in long-term memory, it is not always easily located when it is needed. We may have no recall at all, or only parts of what are needed may be recalled. Often, we have to partially reconstruct the information in order to recall the whole.

Recall falls into several categories. Matching The simplest form of memory is matching. Matching occurs when we can remember enough about one thing to say that another is the same or different. In fact, matching words is a really good beginning for reading, as you will read in Chapter 2. Recognition The second form of recall is recognition.


Retrieval The third form of memory is the retrieval of information. Retrieval is when the pupil is shown the word because and can draw on their memory and read it right away. Tess was preparing for an exam. She read her notes over and over again, until she had a comfortable feeling of familiarity. She would have recognised every one, because she had exercised her recognition memory when she reviewed.

However, Tess failed the exam because she had to retrieve information. Retrieving information is much more challenging than simply recognising it. If Tess had reviewed using active strategies such as working though previous tests, creating diagrams to organise the information and testing herself on her retrieval, she would have had a much better chance of passing. Other pupils are quite ready to learn and capable of the task itself but simply need extra time to go through the learning process.

The speed at which a pupil learns is sometimes called a learning curve. Some pupils have a very steep learning curve. As soon as the teaching begins, they take off, and before long, they have mastered the idea and may need only a brief period of practice to consolidate the learning. Other pupils have a more elongated learning curve. They are equally capable of succeeding with the task, but take longer to develop the ideas or skills. They may arrive Effective teaching 11 at full understanding later than most.

One of the greatest frustrations for the pupil who has a slow, gradual way of learning is that general classroom teaching is often aimed at the pupils who learn more rapidly. Often this pupil does have the capability to learn to the same level as others, provided enough instruction and practice is given. Jack is now a successful business man, and he tells his story.

Even now, I know I need time. Same thing at school. I never did well, never got good grades and though I liked learning, it just seemed to go too fast. Then I had this teacher, Mr Grisham. Best thing that ever happened to me. Just as they are beginning to pick up, the topic is closed and the teacher moves on to the next part of the programme. Conversely, pupils who learn very quickly can easily get frustrated and bored if further instruction and practice is given after they have accomplished the required learning. Language development Without doubt, language is critically important in the process of thinking and learning.

Language is the way in which we most frequently transfer information between teacher and pupil. Internal language is an important part of thinking, learning and remembering.

The Game For Big Kids

It is hard to imagine how we would think without using words. Pupils should not be made to feel that the use of these learning methods and materials is wrong. When you teach, always move from the concrete to the abstract. Start with a real-life example or demonstration of the principle you are teaching. Then move onto the more abstract ideas. When you think pupils are ready, give explicit practice in moving from the concrete to the abstract.

For instance, show the shortcut of counting on from the bigger number when adding two numbers together. If you use only one example, the more concrete thinkers in your class will tend to isolate the information to one example. Teach pupils to think in categories as a way of enhancing their ability to use abstract rather than concrete reasoning.

Classify and cross-classify items, e. At the start of a lesson or activity, provide plenty of background and review to prepare pupils for new learning. Give the pupils a clear summary of what is going to be taught. Write the headings as bulleted points on the board, and work through the topic systematically.

At the end of the lesson, review what has been taught by going over the bulleted points to summarise what has been covered. This helps the pupils to see how the whole lesson has been a series of connected ideas. Demonstrate to pupils how what you are teaching relates to what they already know.

This helps to develop the connections that, in turn, help learning to make sense. Make the connections between different sets of information or concepts part of your teaching. Give explicit instruction and demonstration of the links between one set of ideas and another.

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For example, if you are teaching subtraction in mathematics, take time to demonstrate and practice how the subtraction process relates to addition. If you are teaching about Germany, talk about the similarities and differences between Germany and Sweden or whatever other country you have studied in class. Use software programs designed to help organise ideas and information. Make eye contact and, if necessary, use their names.

You need to remember this. Make the information interesting and appealing. Give the information in several formats. For example, do not just tell the pupils the information verbally, but also draw a diagram or chart. Visualise what you have written. Whisper it to a friend. Three kinds of food in the basket — can you see them now?

Now three things to wear — imagine putting them on. Now imagine a big sign with 30 on the top. Put information in context so it makes sense and connects with things that are already remembered. Today we learned about two other sorts of erosion — wind erosion and ice erosion — so now we have three sorts of erosion to remember. Water, wind and ice. If pupils are trying to remember something, allow some quiet time for rehearsal and consolidation before introducing new information.