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Accelerated Learning & History teaching


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#1 donald cumming

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Posted 01 December 2004 - 05:25 PM

Accelerated Learning & History teaching

Accelerated Learning is possibly the most over-used buzzword knocking around education circles at the moment, so hopefully I will attempt to shed a little light on
1) what exactly Accelerated Learning is (and isn’t)
2) how much it can spur creativity in teaching History


First of all Accelerated Learning is essentially a brand name. This is why when you type ‘Accelerated Learning’ into Google you end up with 2.4 million websites most of which are trying to sell you training/videos/magic wands and so on. However this is not to say that the ideas the brand is based on aren’t fantastic, or that some of the trainers and their material aren’t brilliant too – we had a whole day Inset by Alistair Smith two years ago and he was inspiring. In fact it pretty much kicked off a mini-revolution, both in my History team and across the whole school!

So what is this Accelerated Learning malarkey all about? Well, it’s about using the way the brain/humans learn to help us get the most out of all our students. It is not about making them learn faster, or putting them through exams early. The name is misleading in this respect, and at times causes confusion/resentment – so much so that at Rush Croft we have renamed it ‘Smart Learning’.

Underpinning this is the idea that we all learn in slightly different ways – that we all have different preferred learning styles. Thus the talk of Visual, Auditory or Kinaesthetic learners – many learn/remember through pictures & sounds and especially movement/touch as well as just words. From Boys to EAL students via G&T students – in fact all of out students! People like Howard Gardner developed the idea of Multiple Intelligences, that we do not just learn in different ways, but that there is no one fixed idea of intelligence – from people skills to number skills. Add on to this Mind-mapping from Tony Buzan, Brain Gym, colour, music, positive visualisation and always having water available to keep the brain hydrated and you are getting close to what Accelerated Learning is about. It also makes learning good fun – and a positive emotional experience will of course reinforce the memory!

At the end of the day all these ideas can be summed up as simply good, imaginative practice. And even a quick glance at some of the threads on this website will throw up hundreds of examples of these very ideas in use – from Ian Dawson’s Active Learning to using music in lessons! We are doing it already, and Accelerated Learning really just ties it all together.

However there are some aspects I feel are worth looking at initially in more detail, before I pause in case people have comments/questions:

> The Learning Cycle
> Learning to Learn
> Interactive Whiteboards (IWBs)

The Learning Cycle
This is a structure to lesson planning, which we use in the following way:

. Starter activity/Bell work – short activities as soon as the students arrive through the doors. These can be hooks, mini-reviews, sorting activities – anything.

. Big Picture – how the lesson fits into the enquiry/scheme of work, to put the individual lesson into some sort of ongoing context

. Input – the new information the students will need

. Activity(ies) – what the students will do to process the information. Short review s are helpful here (eg hold up 5 fingers if you feel confident, 1 if you’re baffled)

. Demonstration – how the students feedback their new learning (including paired/group discussion, self-assessment, Q/As using a koosh ball to stimulate nerve endings, rhymes, mindmaps)

. Review/Plenary/Next lesson – reinforce the lesson, and to start framing ideas/make links about the next lesson before they arrive


The lesson cycle has evolved a little to fit our school’s particular needs, and Alistair Smith seems to have recently reduced it to four parts, but it is a key structure underpinning our lessons. Having our lesson plans this way, with reminders to use a range of activities to meet learners needs, frames and supports the planning as well as the learning – it takes away thinking about what should come next. This learning cycle is important, and we make our students aware of it too. The KS3 strategy 3-part lesson also fits neatly into it, which is handy!

Learning to Learn
This is a course we deliver to year 8 students, 1 period a week for 1 ½ terms, which teaches them how the brain works, how to revise, to use mind maps, etc. The idea being that the students think about the process of learning, so should be more effective at doing it. They certainly seem to enjoy it – year 8s who have a range of revision techniques at their fingertips that they don’t forget is wonderful! - and they do take discussions about their learning very seriously. We also introduce them to the ‘smarts’ – Howard Gardner’s multiple intelligences in student speak.

Gardner has 8 Intelligences, which we have renamed thusly:

Linguistic intelligence = Word smart
Visual-spatial = Picture smart
Bodily-kinaesthetic = Body smart
Musical = Music smart
Inter-personal = People smart
Intra-personal = Self smart
Logical-mathematical =Number smart
Naturalist = Nature smart

Whenever we do an activity that touches on one of these smarts we highlight it to the students – eg those students who are people smart light up when we do group work, which pays dividends in terms of motivation when they come to the written work. Students’ strengths in different smarts can be harnessed for Historical understanding!

We also have ‘smart weeks’ where all staff incorporate as many activities using one particular smart as possible into their lessons. During music smart week History teachers used rhyme/rhythm for difficult spellings (our MFL colleagues use this routinely – clapping out new words rhythm), music linked to the lesson (egg Suffragette City by David Bowie for Protests – there’s many more on this thread) or to set an atmosphere (world war II songs), poem/rap plenaries and so on.

Interactive Whiteboards to support learning
Interactive Whiteboards are incredibly effective at supporting these Accelerated Learning ideas. Colour. Sound. Interactivity. Video. Learning disguised as fun. These are all available at your fingertips if ICT is provided and used properly/with vision. Penalty Shootout combines all these!

For us History teachers it means oral sources can be used, video clips are at our fingertips, visual sources can be used in all their glory rather than badly copied OHTs, colours can be used to reinforce concepts (eg if teaching N Ireland, Unionist always in orange, Nationalist in green), the internet can be demonstrated and used, sorting activities, Inspiration software, lines of decision/agreement, etc. It brings History alive visually/sonically, and motivation levels rocket. And whilst it was not impossible to do this before, now all the resources are in one place and their quality is much higher. As I am not the tidiest/best organised teacher on the planet having them stored on computer is particularly useful!

In reality it took a trip to Cramlington school in Northumberland to open my eyes to just how useful a tool IWBs can be. There I saw classrooms with IWBs, decent sound and lots of support for staff – dedicated IT bods who had digitised all videos, converted lesson ideas into IT activities/slides – and groups of teachers given time to research, try out & evaluate new ideas. If you can get your school to pay for it it really is worth the trip! Seeing Ben Walsh’s workshop at the SHP conference was also an eye opener.


I’ll pause here for now, but have practical ideas to try out coming up on:

Brain Gym
Body Smart
People Smart
Colour
Mind Maps
Anything else that might be useful!


Of course none of this happened overnight – it’s been 18 months of continuing development so far. It has meant lots of teamwork – both with my History team, and with the ‘Learning Group’ - trying new ideas out (even when you’re uncertain), sharing failures and successes and of course sharing all our resources. Oh and lots of patience with frustrating computers! There have been plenty of frustrations with colleagues who baulked at the idea of changing long-set practise too – especially when we started implementing Accelerated Learning across the whole school. We’ve stolen ideas from pretty much anyone and everyone, in the name of raising attainment of course, and along the way it’s been the most creative & rewarding time of my teaching career.

:thumbup

PS As for letting the students bring bottles of water into lessons, this is just common sense really. The nerves in the brain need water to work – a dehydrated student will be performing way below par! When we first started with this particular reform (!) we all had concerns about the students being responsible enough but that seems ridiculous now. On hot summers days in particular (which seem so far away now!) I can’t believe we ever said no.


Oh and if you want to find out more about Alistair Smith, this is his website: www.alite.co.uk They do a neat free newsletter each month. Finally, more details on Cramlington can be found here:
cramlington

Edited by donald cumming, 01 December 2004 - 05:34 PM.


#2 DAJ Belshaw

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Posted 01 December 2004 - 06:48 PM

You've probably already seen it, but I've used this website to interesting effect with my Year 8's to find out their multiple intelligences. I was finding a certain group I had, despite the fact that there are only 19 of them in the class, quite difficult to teach. I'd clamped down on any behaviour issues, but they seemed to be less interested in what going on than perhaps they should have been - they are, after all, nice kids.

As part of an ICT lesson, I got each pupil to complete the multiple intelligences test on the website I've linked to above. The results were quite intriguing. By the pupils writing down the indvidual code they are given at the end of the test, you can get a kind of glorified pie chart indicating whether they are 'word smart', 'number smart', etc. Not only can you do this for individual pupils, but you can get an average of the whole class, or an average of each gender. I found that the boys scored relatively highly on the 'Intrapersonal' and 'Kinaesthetic' components :woo: , while the girls scored more highly on the 'Interpersonal' and 'Visual/Spatial' components. :blink:

In a nutshell, this meant that whilst the girls were good at working in groups and with more visual things, the lads were better working by themselves on more 'doing'-based activities. I repeated the tests with different Year 8 classes and got different - but less extreme - results.

An unrelated example:
Posted Image

Although I haven't managed to completely sort the issue out, after half term I implemented a few changes:

1. I have now arranged my class in groups of four, rather than in rows. I have noticed that the girls choose to sit together in fours, whereas the boys tend to sit in pairs.

2. I give more choice in the work they are set - for example, either drawing a storyboard (which tends to be a more individual and kinaesthetic activity) or analyzing pictures (which tends to be a more collaborative and visual activity).

3. I no longer expect each pupil to get the same things out of each lesson. I've realised (as historians should) that each person comes to the lesson with different skills, biases, and experiences. I am there to facilitate the development of skills and help transmit knowledge. How this happens does not have to be uniform throughout the class! :teacher:

I get on well with the class now. They seem to have responded well to the changes, and I look forward to continuing to adapt my teaching to their needs!

Doug :hehe:

Edited by DAJ Belshaw, 01 December 2004 - 09:54 PM.


#3 donald cumming

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Posted 03 December 2004 - 03:15 PM

Just a quickie, but a visual version of the Learning Cycle can be found here:

Learning Cycle

For some reason I can't paste images into my message - sorry...

Donald

#4 donald cumming

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Posted 04 December 2004 - 01:00 PM

Body Smart (kinaesthetic) ideas.

Body smart activities can be the most challenging/threatening sort of activities to try out - trusting the students to move about your room can be daunting (especially period 5 on a friday with year 9!). However they can be the most rewarding & revealing activities for students, and also the most memorable too - a positive feeling attached to learning always makes it well-remembered. You only have to look at the way students respond to PE to see the benefits of getting students active. Boys in particular respond well to 'doing' things. And of course, so do we - these can be the most fun lessons for us too.

So what sort of activities can be tried out easily?

Post it notes
The miracle of the modern age! these can be used for starters/plenaries and plenty more besides. Get the students to write on them and come up stick them on the board/walls. They always look at each others' answers and discuss them as they do it. Its basic moving but still counts as moving about. I use Post its for things like: speculating on a topic before it is studied; choosing the most relevant quotation; making decisions (along a line of agreement/disagreement drawn on the board); improving their explanations; writing what the enjoyed/what they still need explaining at the end of a lesson; and so on. The students find it engaging, and it encourages them to think about own thinking too. You'll also find that all sorts of students argue about who is right/wrong and demanding they defend their decisions.

Decisions
If you want to make a class decision, get the students up and physically move to an area of the classroom, then explain their decisions.

Actions
Make up actions to go with key concepts - you'll be amazed how effective a memory tool this is. For Ernest Rohm, I tell them to close their eyes, imagine a chubby Brownshirt on a motorbike, hold their arms out as if on a bike and make a "rhhhm, rhhhm" engine noise. It sounds silly, but simply putting my arms out in a bike-riding manner makes them all burst into 'Rohm Rohm, SA leader' in future lessons. For Liebknecht and Luxembourg they sway to the left (the communist left of course) and sing their names. You can see them swaying in tests as they try to remember! If an Historical figure is angry, get them go shake their fists and growl (in whatever accent is required). Get them under their tables when they learn about trench life. Arms out for the aeroplane stage of Blitzkreig. The sillier the better I say, and always make the students stand up, or they will try to be cool and not do it.

We should definitely share ideas here, I am convinced this is a winning and very simple strategy and there are 1243 imaginations who have registered on this website for us to draw upon!

Rooms as a map
Use your room as a map and choose students to be people your are reading about. Get students to wave from their locations - Munich, Tyburn (if you are discussing the final journey of a condemned 18th century fraudster), Hastings, etc. This helps reinforce their learning. Also I have a cheap stove pipe cardboard hat when we investigate Quarry Bank Mill in year 8 which different students wear for different owners. The student/owner has to move about the room as directed by the narrative. Not only does that student remember what happened and why, but the others do too. If you teach the Battle of Britain, make your starter activity 'make a paper aeroplane', then choose students to act out some of the stages/manouvreing. Use tables to represent UK/Europe with a big gap to represent the channel. Again make students explain each decision they make. Select your best behaved, nicest students to be the RAF/Luftwaffe - they collect all the planes. If you have a mean streak choose two naughty kids to be the grim reaper, whose job it is to dispose of the planes and not throw any at all. Then when you are ready let the nice students throw their squadrons! There shouldn't be chaos if you choose your team correctly, and the class loves doing whatever follow up you choose to do. And they remember the lesson vividly too. In fact props are also always fantastic - and realism definitely does not need to apply.

Sorting exercises.
Card sorting on the desk is fine. They can see their thinking and change it. It is a visual map to support any writing. The students are touching so nerves are stimulated. A splendid tool. But why not take it one stage further and get them out of their desks?
Use tabards on students and get them to sort each other into order (chronological, significance, etc) to help plan essays. The highwaymen activity at thinkinghistory is a perfect explanation of this
http://www.thinkingh...urces/index.htm
I recommend trying out the other activities. And if you can, get to Ian Dawson's workshops at SHP courses/conference if you can too. Its what started me off on this particular adventure.

You could also get classes into groups and have competitions between different halves of the class. I have put events from Oluadah Equiano's life onto A4 cards and had year 8s racing to sort themselves, make decisions and then explain the steps they have taken. Explaining their thinking is important, as is following this up. If you want to do a fun overview, get a bunch of events/dates on paper - eg a review of the ks3 History at the end of year 9, covering 1000-2004. Get your class outside and get them into two teams. Move some distance away from them and then they first have to sort themselves into chronological. They then have to race to find different events (eg the most important woman), run to you and explain their choice. Keep a score of course.

Sources
If the students have to find evidence, why not really make them find it? Blow the sources up and stick them around your room. Give time limits, add in a competitive element if you can too.

So...
This hopefully shows a few eminently usable ideas - which I hope will stimulate lots more ideas (for me to steal and use in my lessons!). If you have any questions just ask. Also I will try to put a few of my resources (eg for the Battle of Britain idea) up here shortly too.

Edited by donald cumming, 04 December 2004 - 06:19 PM.


#5 JohnDClare

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Posted 04 December 2004 - 02:18 PM

Thank you Donald, for these ideas.

Kinaesthetic learning is essential for many pupils - particularly children with special needs or homes where they have not been trained in auditory or visual learning by their cultural background. At schools where the preponderance of pupils are culturally-disadvantaged, kinaesthetic learning techniques ought to dominate the lessons: these are the children who learn better by doing than they do by listening or seeing.

Personally I tend to avoid card-sorting exercises; they take ages to cut up, and they waft onto the floor too easily. Actually, I would challenge whether card-sorting is a kinaesthetic learning exercise at all; I'm sure it's more visual, though the act of move the card is kinaesthetic. An alternative - if you MUST use them - is to make them A4 size on pieces of card, and to move them about as a whole-class exercise.

Note also that you will be told by some commercial IT companies that their computer programs are 'kinaesthetic' because they involve making key strokes on a computer. Rubbish!

Kinaesthetic learning is where the sensation of touch or movement is used to create links between the 'understanding' or 'memory' and the 'touch' or 'movement' brain cells. Thus - in the same way that a visual learner might 'see' the page in his mind's eye - the memory is stored as a 'movement/touch image' and the kinaesthetic centres in the brain.

For some pupils, this can be as simple a matter as walking around their room as they memorise the notes.

To Donald's excellent list of kinaesthetic learning activities I would add:
1. Drama - acting out the events of a narrative (e.g. the events of the Hastings campaign). This can be as simple as holding a card and moving to a place in the classroom at a specific time; this can also help pupils with sequencing problems to establish the sequence of events.
2. Freeze-frame - setting up a tableau to represent something (e.g. sitting on floor/ chairs and standing on tables to represent the hierarchy of the feudal system).
3. Use the old children's party game when telling a story, that - when a certain word is mentioned - they have to stand up and do an action.
4. Handling artefacts for reasons other than simply handling the artefacts - ie. when attached to a learning exercise (e.g. holding a putting on a WWI helmet whilst thinking of the thoughts and feelings of a soldier as he prepared to go OTT).
5. Attach certain ritual movements to certain often-repeated skills or exercises - like the 'draw your swords' action that accompanied bible-searches in the old Sunday schools. These can be quite fun - as a flippant example, in the old days, when we use to watch excerpts from the Tony Curtis film The Vikings, we all used to do the action of blowing the Viking horn. For years, if I suddenly did the sound and the action while walking down the corridor, dozens of pupils of all ages would respond in kind!

#6 donald cumming

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Posted 04 December 2004 - 06:31 PM

John,

I love idea no. 3 - you could easily make the lesson like some crazed hypnotist act if you gave different pupils different actions/roles.

eg:
Civil War
Roundhead students should stand up and shout 'tyrant' whenever the word King is mentioned. Some Roundhead & Puritan students should stand up and shout 'tis the Anti-Christ' if Laud/Catholic Church is mentioned.
Cavalier students should shout 'treason' whenever Cromwell/Parliament is mentioned
etc

:D

#7 JohnDClare

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 07:14 PM

Lapsing terribly and being dreadfully old-fashioned, one of the most effective kinaesthetic teaching strategies, of course, is writing!!

Writing is truly a multi-sensory activity. It activates the motor sections of the brain, whilst at the same time the visual and (since you usually say the words in your head as you write them) the auditory centres of the brain are used as well.

It is not for nothing that the best way to learn notes, or the spelling of a word, is to write them down over and over.

#8 Dan Lyndon

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Posted 05 December 2004 - 08:55 PM

Probably had my best lesson of the year on Friday when some of my year 9s re-enacted the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand - 5 volunteers, each holding an A4 image on a ruler (like a puppet), with them demonstrating the actions as I described the narrative. The highlight had to be the exploding student who threw himself under the table arms and legs flying everywhere. I followed this up with a sequencing exercise putting the events in the correct chronological order.
During the same lesson I had a prospective student teacher in the lesson and she also made an interesting observation of my starter. I had on my whiteboard an image of the austrian eagle and the serbian eagle as well as a black hand and they had to work out the connection. They identified Austria fairly quickly but when we moved onto Serbia I said that this would be a real challenge and would be surprised if they got it (I must admit that I did this subconsciously). Apparently the concentration of the students shot up and the hands in the air multiplied.
I also played the boys some Franz Ferdinand (Take me out) and was hoping to get them to work out who the band was and again make a connection to the lesson. Unfortunately this was spoiled by my lack of foresight in using windows media player which had the name of the band in the top corner. Next time I must remember to minimise!
Until the lion has a historian of his own, the tale of the hunt will always glorify the hunter.
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#9 donald cumming

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Posted 08 December 2004 - 07:21 PM

Brain Gym

Brain Gym centres around the idea that by doing small exercises you can stimulate both the left and right sides of your brain - what Braingym.com calls the "lateral dimension"... It seems that this may improve concentration, balance and perhaps even thinking skills. What I have found it certainly can do is bring calm to over-excited year 8s on a windy afternoon, and improve the focus of year 11s who have indulged in too many chips and doughnuts after lunch. It also seems to freshen students minds if they fall into in a mid-lesson dip, making them better learners after a quick mental workout.

However, Brain Gym exercises are quite tricky to describe. But here goes:

Opposing circles
With your right index finger make a large cricle in the air, your finger moving away from your body. Then, still circling with your right finger, make your left finger circle in the opposite direction. If it is too easy (!), swap finger direction.

Figure 8
Use different hands to draw figure 8s in the air. Change the size of the 8s and which hands are being used.

Finger writing
Writing words on the desk with different fingers and in different directions, and mirrored too. I have also been told this helps dyslexic students remember spellings.

Cross Crawl
Stand. Move the right elbow across the body to the left knee as you raise the knee, and then do the same thing for the left elbow on the right knee. Try 15 reps each side.

I'm sure other people have great ideas ready to share - and of course there is the official literature available here
brain gym

#10 donald cumming

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Posted 02 February 2005 - 01:41 PM

Number Smart

As its currently 'number smart week' at Rush Croft it seems timely to suggest a few number smart ideas that work in History lessons.

Firstly this intelligence is not just numbers it is also about applying logic. Therefore any evaluative work or critical thinking fits in nicely. Apparently dingbat-style activities are ideal too - and these are good as starters of as pleanry activities (students to make them/or work out yours). Solving riddles/cryptic clues is good too - for example I have run a 'What is half of 8?' competition across school (25 pages of answers from one student!). It would not take long to rustle up cryptic clues to Punishments, or Nazi leaders or 20th century events...

Inspirations software is very handy for rearranging events in order of significance Its easy to do and is a very clear visual way of letting students evaluate and revaluate. Planning an essay then ranking/rearranging the paragraphs in order of importance can be done in a similar manner.

Donald

#11 donald cumming

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Posted 04 April 2005 - 02:43 PM

Kinaesthetic/visual revision idea:

As a way of making revision more memorable/fun as well as accessing learning styles I have started trying to get my y11 students to make a revision-related object out of card and stick revision notes onto it - the first attempt has been to make a model gallows (3-cornered tyburn tree) from card and stick their notes about the rise/fall of the Bloody code onto it. They are colour coding their information and organising it before they stick it on. One side of the gallows is for the end of the B Code, one for the reasons for the start of the B Code and one for other info/quotations. First impressions are certainly favourable in terms of motivation/engagement (tricking them into enjoying revision!). Hopefully it will work as an aide memoire too.

Haven't though of a object they could make for Weimar/Nazi Germany yet. Any ideas?

Also what other AL-related ideas have people used in their lessons that the rest of us would benefit from?

Donald
:D

#12 Dan Moorhouse

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Posted 04 April 2005 - 04:22 PM

Haven't though of a object they could make for Weimar/Nazi Germany yet.  Any ideas?

Also what other AL-related ideas have people used in their lessons that the rest of us would benefit from? 

Donald
:D

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


How about an Eagle? Used a lot in German imagery throughout the 20th century - wings can be used for things that led to progress and the claws for the control mechanisms put in place. Avoids having to use something that is exclusively associated with nazism as well.

#13 Dan Lyndon

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Posted 04 April 2005 - 05:10 PM

Haven't though of a object they could make for Weimar/Nazi Germany yet.  Any ideas?

Also what other AL-related ideas have people used in their lessons that the rest of us would benefit from? 

Donald
:D

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


How about an Eagle? Used a lot in German imagery throughout the 20th century - wings can be used for things that led to progress and the claws for the control mechanisms put in place. Avoids having to use something that is exclusively associated with nazism as well.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>


Nice ideas guys, I recently gave a revision session for my year 11s on the History of medicine in which they produced a poster (they had to cut and paste the different elements together) for their bedroom walls (yeah right!) based on the 12 key individuals in medicine http://www.comptonhi.../medicine12.pdf but it would have been far more interesting if they had stuck it over a picture of a preanaesthetic operation for example.
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#14 A Finemess

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Posted 05 April 2005 - 09:06 AM

Writing is truly a multi-sensory activity. It activates the motor sections of the brain, whilst at the same time the visual and (since you usually say the words in your head as you write them) the auditory centres of the brain are used as well.


One of the more interesting observations as a class teacher is to watch different pupils as they write ...

Which ones poke their tongues out?
Which one move their lips?
Which ones sit on their other hand or hold it in a particular way?
Facial expressions?
etc

I remember also hearing a radio programme which suggested that ancient libraries (e.g. Alexandria) were far from silent since it is highly likely that readers read aloud - a bit like Hebraic or Islamic religious schools?

I have vague memories of an academic work which suggested that the development of language during the palaeoloithic period was fundamentally linked to the development of other "fine motor skills" e.g. tool making.

Someone must be doing research into this surely? It has huge potential in all kinds of learning situations.
“All men dream; but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity; but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act out otheir dreams with open eyes, to make it possible.”.(T.E. Lawrence)
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#15 donald cumming

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Posted 29 May 2005 - 01:55 PM

With the exams all but upon us here's another thought:

This year we're going to stick up key images/words from the examined courses on the walls outside the exam room, so the students get last minute visual reminders that may help their memories. Nothing complicated, just simple triggers. I may also see if we can play some of the music they'll have heard as they arrive at school andmill about - whether it be prince charming by adam and the ants or the songs from carabret. If it helps the students to remember it surely had to be an idea worth trying!

Lastly I've tried using a bit of 'positive anchoring' with my year 11 classes over the past months. They imagine themselves sitting at their exam desk, calm, happy and writing brilliant answers. As they imagine this they gently push a fingernail into a finger. The idea of this is that the brain associates the nail/finger feeling with a sense of calm and success. I'll report back after the exams, but it has certainly helped one or two students who had been panicking in lessons that 'everything was all too much!' They were able to refocus well, and to be more productive, at least during the lesson.

Donald

Edited by donald cumming, 24 August 2005 - 05:05 PM.





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