Cognitive Science in the Classroom

To learn about Cognitive Science, a good place to start is with The Learning Scientists, who are cognitive psychological scientists whose main research focus is on the science of learning. Note the Frequently Asked Questions and Downloadable materials for teachers and students.

The Learning Scientists have a very comprehensive collection of podcasts, many of these are bite-size, short but really clear – ideal for busy people!

For many examples of Mathematics resources we can use in the classroom and reading, see my page on Retrieval Practice and other learning strategies.

Retrieval Practice Guides

Retrieval  – Library

For, I think one of the most comprehensive and well-organised reading lists I have come across see The go-bag on the CogSciSci blog. Blogs, articles and research have been included with a real focus on the application of cognitive science to the classroom. the list is in 23 sections with a clear summary of each item.

The CogSciSci blog concerns cognitive science in the science classroom, but this reading list is relevant for teachers of any subject. Note also the study modules available for teachers, including Retrieval Practice. In section 7 of the Retrieval Practice module I was interested to see the Retrieval Roulettes and like the KS4 Chemistry triple new Excel resource linked to in the third paragraph. Questions and answers on the first sheet can be for any subject, this particular resource has all of GCSE chemistry (AQA) but you could just copy and paste questions and answers. For Mathematics, we do have Jonathan Hall’s Retrieval Facts on MathsBot or his Recap and Recall; to choose questions by topic, use his GCSE Revision Grid. Other resources can be found on my Retrieval Practice page, including this Custom Starter from Transum which allows teachers to select the number of questions and the topics to include; scroll down the page and choose the topics you want from the Concept Selection.
Transum Revision

It is possible to save a particular selection of topics as the URL for your selection will be generated. It is also possible to drag the panels so your questions are displayed in the desired order. The beginning of a lesson can be an ideal time to review previous learning, starters like this can be ideal.

To return to the reading list, I was particularly interested to read Kris Boulton’s “When shouldn’t I use knowledge organisers?”. Kris has written on why they are less applicable to maths. The one knowledge organiser I have used myself is William Emeny’s one on Angle Facts. In Mathematics, rather than knowledge organisers, we can turn to Frayer Models.

non examples – Jonathan Hall




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