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Learning New Material

I find a great way to make sure the students store the necessary information in the correct area of the brain is by various methods. I tend to put very important information on the board, and then describe it to the students. I also tend to remind the students that if I repeat a topic/fact/detail, it is likely a very important thing to remember as well. I will go back to this important information again and again to the point were the students know automatically what I am talking about.

Hi Matthew,
Right you are. Repetition in different modalities really helps students to catch and hand on to needed content. They can store it in their working memory for retrieval when needed.

In my describtions to students, especially on very technical items, I tend to lean to the side of being "anal". I do ,however, attempt to make things interesting, rather than just repeating them over and over. One example is my hands on method of instruction. Rather than just lecture I will create a visual, hands on segment and involve the students.

Great approach.

Instructors need to develop that enable learners draw from their long-term memories,either semantic or episodic, and generalazation help students solving the problem.

Currently when I introduce a new project to my students I explain:
1) the reason behind the project and placement in the course
2)how it builds on other skill sets they have experienced and applied in previous courses
3) and how it will serve them in future cousrework and professioanlly.

Hi Elizabeth,
Great way to develop a connection between relevancy and application. The students are being given the reasons why this content will later serve them well in their careers. This is an important connection that needs to be made.

I use entertainment and humor to try to merge the semantic with the episodic. This engages the students and gives them something for the information to latch on to whether it is a funny story or a humorous video clip. A huge part of teaching is knowing how to be an entertainer.

i'm a culinary instroctor were my students age is 35 and above my students have diferent learning curves and to get to every individual i combine diferent aproches so they can disolve all the information, but reviewing every day the previos lessons help them with the Memorization of the material.

I agree with Humberto. A basic recap of the previous lecture will increase the probability of students retaining the information that was discussed/expained/ presented during that given period of time.

I always write an objective on the board so the students know what to expect out of the class that day. I have them for 4 hours straight so I also break down the entire session so they know what to expect and we are clear as to the direction we are going. Throughout the 4 hours we have 2 hours of class and demonstrations and than the rest of the class is a lab. I tend to use a lot of humor to keep the class moving along and try to be very clear with the directions and give lots of examples. It is amazing how you can say something 2 or 3 times but they still miss it. It is very true people hear what they want to hear. By making sure they are hearing and seeing it and given examples I am hoping they get the key concepts and principles engrained in their brains.

I have the same situation since we teach the same gruop of students and for those we have the same aproach. to make them undertand the material much better.

I also agree with Matt. I tend to repeat the importance of certain facts over and over. I also give the repeated information in different forms, so that all types of learners get the importance of whatever information I'm teaching. From handouts, talking about it, actual doing or showing it. Even stressing to the point YOU NEED TO KNOW THIS NOW & FOREVER.

I also use repetition to help the students to grasp the content

I strongly believe in research. When the topic is important to be stored to short and long term memories, I give a brief "question-answer homework". I find the research to be an excellent tool to comprehension, therefore, a very efficient learning process.

Hi Nadine,
Good strategy for reinforcing the memories of your students. This method as you know really helps to get the transition from course content to stored knowledge started and then internalized for use later on.

At our trade school, we provide instruction in building custom firearms. Hands-on exercises and complete projects performed by the student along with much individual coaching is the primary means of teaching. Step-by-step working examples as well as completed firearms comprise most of the instructional materials used. I have found that redirecting students' attention to the examples used early in the course near the end of their course of study allows me to take advantage of repetition/reinforcement as well as of the heightened attention to detail of the students as the day of the final exam approaches.

Hi Charles,
Good examples of how to keep the students engaged throughout the course and see how much their expertise has developed. They not only complete projects but also gain confidence in the expertise they are acquiring which will help them to have success in the work world.

I am a Baking and Pastry instructor and we have several products to finish in a day that sometimes overwhelm students, of all ages. What I try to do is write on the board an organized production schedule that would make it manageable for them, and when they get lost, the board is there to remind them and organize their own thought processes. When it comes to each of the items in the production, again, I try to break down the recipes into stages, very concrete steps, that formulas are written in the order of ingredient usage, so again, it is a process, a very structured pprocess.

Hi Marilyn,
This is a very good and sound approach to getting the students to see how to move their knowledge and skills forward. By having success even when the production schedule is tight they develop confidence and skill. Combined these two, help them to become prepared to step into their field as well trained producers of quality pastry products.

I have found that practical application, whether through carefully structured role-playing activities or live-action situations, have a great effect on the retention level of students. When they engage in activities that force them to internalize and then apply the new concept they are more likely to develop an understanding that is observable.

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