The secret to better math learning.
Every teacher has heard students say: “I don’t remember doing that,” or “We didn’t learn that last year,” or, if you are lucky, “I don’t know how to do that anymore.”
The good news is that there are things you can do to help your students remember and apply what they've learned.
One of the most effective, research-backed strategies to improve student retention is retrieval practice. This high-impact approach asks students to recall information they've learned previously so that it will stick for good, encouraging long-lasting learning.
The Solution: Retrieval Practice
Retrieval happens when we bring something we previously learned back into our minds.
While the first two stages of learning —encoding and consolidation—have received the most scholarly attention, we need to emphasize the third stage, retrieval, more in classrooms.
With this guide, you can learn how to implement retrieval practice in your classroom, with adapted exercises for each grade level.
What’s Included in the Guide?
Daily cumulative reviews, done at the beginning of the math block or period.
Then-Now-Later grids, where students engage with three different concepts learned earlier, currently, or in the future.
Exit tickets, which are brief opportunities for students to demonstrate their understanding at the end of a lesson.
Download the Guide
This free guide offers three retrieval practice activities and illustrates how to use them with several key concepts across grades K-12. Feel free to try these activities as demonstrated or adjust them for other ideas you want to highlight with your students.
Don’t forget! Retrieval practice is like a muscle: The more you use it, the stronger it gets. So start using it in your classroom today and see the difference it makes in your students' retention!
Dr. David Costello is a principal and has taught various grade levels before assuming roles of numeracy interventionist, numeracy coach, numeracy leader, and curriculum consultant for Prince Edward Island, Canada. He has published three books: Mathematizing Student Thinking: Connecting Problem Solving to Everyday Life and Building Capable and Confident Math Learners (2022), Making Math Stick: Classroom Strategies That Support the Long-Term Retention of Math Concepts (2021), and Using What Works: Strategies for Developing a Literacy-Rich Environment in Math (2019). Dr. Costello also facilitates professional learning across Canada in the areas of mathematics and school development.
Learn more www.costellomath.com.Explore more related to this author