Effective teaching methods aren’t just for teachers. They’re for anyone who needs to transfer information or knowledge to another person.
Teaching someone (whether old or young) new information can be a challenge. Have you ever tried explaining something to someone and felt like you must be speaking a different language? Perhaps the person was obviously confused or had a blank stare on their face. What can you do to make transferring information and knowledge easier?
The message of modern memory research is that the brain is wired to recognize and organize CONNECTIONS and that rote memorizing is usually ineffective. In other words, people are more likely to retain new information when they can relate it to what they already know.
Here is one of the most effective teaching methods you can use.
The next time you have to teach something to someone, start by explaining the learning to yourself first, as if you were teaching it to someone who was unfamiliar with the concept. By using this self-talk approach, you will clarify and consolidate your own understanding. You can then relate it more easily to what the other person may have already learned.
In a classroom setting, after the teaching emphasize to review the learning in SHORT SEGMENTS. There are no known upper limits on how much human beings can learn, but there are significant limits on how much we can remember at one learning session, SUCH AS WHEN CRAMMING.
Therefore, have students practice early (after the learning) and often. This can start before the end of the period in some reflection activity before students leave.
Regardless of whether you are teaching something to a school-aged person or an adult, if the connections between subject matter and students are relevant and personal to them, and if the learning is rehearsed several times, the learned material becomes part of long-term memory.
What are a few of your most effective teaching methods? What have you done to make learning easier for youth and/or adults? Please share your ideas on the Without Stress Facebook page.