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Why don't students like school? Chapter 3 - CPD Session

Moving from Working to Long-Term Memory (from Why Don’t Students like School, Daniel T. Willingham)


The initial example is about a history teacher getting students to bake cookies to remember the Underground Railroad – but the author believing all they will remember is how to bake cookies. Or an amazing lesson and all they remember is a small anecdote or a joke you made. This worries me greatly and sort of suggests that lessons need to be sterile in order for students to remember what you want them to – or is that so? I had the same thought when reading Cognitive Load Theory – anecdotes and jokes can overload working memory and prevent the thing you want them to learn from going in. This is thoroughly depressing if true and makes me not want to be a teacher.