I hope you are all doing as well as can be expected at this difficult time. Things at Braintastic! HQ are ticking over, as we try to support teachers and parents in any way we can.
As we all settle in to remote learning, now is a great time to think about how to mix things up, to keep kids as engaged as possible. Some of these will probably be familiar to you, but I wanted to share the psychology behind some top tips for online learning.
The best way to help information pass from short to long term memory is to repeat it. So don’t be afraid to go over what you learnt yesterday at the start of the next day’s lesson- and maybe even the day after!
The spacing of these repetitions is important too- the trick is to revise something just as you start to forget it. The more times you repeat something, the longer this spacing can become, so you might be able to revise the next day, then a week later, then two weeks… and so on. This is the best way to strengthen the connections between neurons, and make sure those memories stick for the long term.
We’ve all seen kid’s eyes glaze over as they begin to zone out, but if their attention wanders, they won’t be taking in the fascinating information you are telling them. And our attention spans are lower online than in person! To avoid this, try to vary the activities as often as possible- perhaps giving students problems to solve at various points throughout the lesson, rather than in a block at the end.
Games are fun, and enjoyment improves attention. Can you give the students a challenge, pitting them against one another, or against the clock, to win points or prizes? These can be great ways of breaking up a class and keeping them engaged.
We are all suffering screen fatigue at the moment, and it can be tough to provide students with time away from the computer, whilst keeping them learning. But letting them get hands-on, making or building something, can really help their learning.
If you are looking for something a bit different, Braintastic!’s online shows, workshops & science club can be a great way to give your students a change, and to give yourself a bit of a break! Our sessions include loads of interactive games and experiments to keep kids hooked, and we also have hands-on worksheets available, which help continue the learning offline after the show, including some we are offering for free- just head to our freebies page for details.
We are now taking bookings for Science Week, as well as through the rest of Easter and Summer terms- just get in touch to find out more.
Wishing you happy learning and, as always, stay curious!
Ginny & the Braintastic! Team