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Topic Archives: Memory

Visual Memory: The Hidden Gem

March 30, 2019

Visual memory is a key skill for STEM. Mathematicians, scientists and artists all rely heavily on this trait to be efficient in their work. Note: This is one of a 10 blog series on learning traits. Read about all 10 learning traits here. What is Visual Memory? Visual memory is the ability to remember what you see, including images, patterns, colors or what’s in “the mind’s eye”.  Why is it important? While you can definitely succeed in school without strong visual memory, your visual memory helps a lot. For elementary students, visual memory is key to memorizing math facts and sight words. As students progress in school, visual memory becomes increasingly important in subjects like geometry, algebra, and science, where you need to remember patterns, shapes and diagrams of multi-step processes. While it’s true that… Read More

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Verbal Memory: The Key to Learning Efficiency

March 30, 2019

Verbal memory is the skill that makes students most efficient in school and with homework, particularly in elementary school. Note: This is one of a 10 blog series on learning traits. Read about all 10 learning traits here. What is Verbal Memory? Verbal memory is the ability to remember what you read or hear. It includes your ability to hear or read a word, sentence or paragraph and then recall it when needed. Why is Verbal Memory so important? A lot of in-school learning involves reading, listening or studying and then recalling it when needed. Remembering vocabulary definitions, key details in a story, or the name of a species are all examples of verbal memory. While it’s true that technology is a good enabler so that students don’t need to memorize nearly as much… Read More

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Best Flashcard Apps & Memorization Strategies

April 5, 2017

Spring is here. If you’re a student, that means…Finals. And plenty to memorize. Flashcards are one of the most effective study tools. Finding the best flashcard app, can save you A LOT of time so choose wisely. Best flashcard app features: Create your own: The process of creating the flashcards helps you learn. And when you create your own, you know you are studying accurate information. Never rely on open-sourced flashcards. Categorize Cards: It’s best to learn and review by chunking information. If you have 20 vocabulary words to learn, master five before moving on to the next. As you progress in your studying, you want to group your cards by which ones you mastered and which ones still need more practice. Random Order Review: You want… Read More

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Play Hard, Study Hard: What Cognitive Skills Tell Us

November 30, 2016

Research on cognitive skills gives powerful insight into what we should generally expect from children behaviorally, emotionally and academically at every age. Scientists from University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine Brain Behavior Lab evaluated nearly 10,000 children ages 8 to 21. They began with fMRI scans and then moved to an online assessment to analyze brain development at every age. Their data is fascinating. What We’ve Known About Cognitive Skills We’ve know for a long time that childhood is a period of rapid brain development. It is important that students shouldn’t be coasting and they shouldn’t be stretched too far beyond their comfort zone. In other words, they should be working in a state of “desirable difficulties” according to Dr. Robert A. Bjork. What’s News About Cognitive Skills from the Brain… Read More

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Kids Sports Success: Why Executive Function Skills Might Be the Key

July 6, 2016

Do you have an athletic kid that isn’t making the “A team”? Learn why some of the same hidden skills that can affect classroom performance also might be affecting your child’s playing and interfering with your kids sports success. Listening Does the coach need to call your kid’s name in the group to make sure she’s listening? If your child doesn’t actively listen to the coach, she’s probably not absorbing as much feedback as her teammates. And chances are, she’s making mistakes as a result. Why doesn’t she listen? The first thing to check is your child’s hearing. If she can hear you just fine, you might want to check if she is having difficulties with auditory processing, working memory, or attention. What can I do? … Read More

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Identify Learning Difficulties: Observation Checklist

June 28, 2016

Are you worried about your student’s grades or difficulties in school? The best way to help is to start with an accurate idea of what exactly is the problem. Use this checklist to identify it. Then click on the skill in parentheses to learn more. Once you know the underlying reason your child is struggling, use your Mindprint Toolbox to figure out exactly what to do next. Executive Functions Does she have trouble staying focused for longer tasks or those she has less interest? (attention) Is his work inconsistent or have random errors? (attention) Does he have trouble following directions? Completing multi-step tasks? (working memory) Does she have difficulty with planning? Staying organized? (working memory) Does he have over-react to transitions or unexpected… Read More

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Let’s Not Forget the Forgetting Curve

April 6, 2016

  You are probably familiar with the concept of the learning curve. When it’s steep, learning is a challenge. When the learning curve is shallow, learning comes easily. When we say a student is smart in subject, we often mean they have a shallow learning curve. Most of school focuses on getting students up the learning curve, testing them to be sure they made it, and then moving on to the next topic.   But in reality, learning doesn’t stop with understanding. Deep learning encompasses understanding, storing, and recalling the information as needed for problem solving. If students know their facts or strategies and then forget, they need to struggle right back up the learning curve when they need to use that information again.* Who among us hasn’t had their mind go… Read More

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7 Reasons for Test Anxiety and What To Do About It

January 11, 2016

  There are a variety of reasons for test anxiety. The best news is that a little bit of test anxiety is good thing. It provides an adrenaline rush to work efficiently. But too much stress produces a full rush of hormones that interferes with the ability to think clearly and rememberwhat you know. If test anxiety is a problem, read on for the seven most common reasons for test anxiety and what to do about it. The very first step is to recognize that the reasons for test anxiety are different for every student. The trick is to figure out which one is the reason for your child’s test anxiety. Subject-Specific Anxiety Sometimes kids develop test anxiety around one subject but not another, similar to how they might have anxiety around… Read More

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5 Common Misconceptions about Teens and Sleep

September 12, 2015

We hear it all the time. Teens need more sleep. They burn the candle at both ends, with early start times for school followed by hours of after school activities and homework. When I taught high school, I saw my students in first period at 7:45 a.m. and dismissed the last class 2:45 p.m. And guess what? These teens were exhausted at both ends of the day. They wanted coffee. Did you drink coffee in 10th grade?! As adults, many of us empathize with the adolescent’s desire for more sleep. We’re tired, too. But do we really understand the unique problem teens face when it comes to their sleep deficits? Because in reality, the teen brain is very different from the… Read More

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Working Memory: The Driver of Time Management, Organization and Problem Solving

December 5, 2014

Note: This is one of a 10 blog series on learning traits. Read about all 10 learning traits here. Working memory is the skill that drives how easily and efficiently you can work through multi-step problems. When we describe someone as a “quick thinker” they probably have strong working memory. Not surprisingly, it is key to academic success. What is Working Memory? Working memory is how easily you can juggle multiple bits of information in your head and use that information to do something. Remembering a multi-digit phone number and then dialing it is an example.  So is solving a multi-step math problem, particularly if it requires mental math. Reading comprehension relies heavily on working memory–you need to remember what you just read to… Read More

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