Rote learning rules – again!

Mike the Psych's Blog

stick_figure_walking_up_books_1600_wht_3441Neuroscience is proving that learning your times tables should never have gone out of fashion.

Practice makes perfect and sitting, listening and learning facts helps you to recall facts and knowledge and make good decisions.

Helen Abadzi, a cognitive psychologist who worked for 27 years as a senior education specialist at the World Bank, believes textbooks, homework and learning tables and phonics by heart are vital for children’s education.

Those without the automatic and unconscious ability to do mental arithmetic, and those without facts at their fingertips, are unlikely to progress to analytical thinking.

Speaking at the Cambridge Festival of Ideas she said traditional teaching methods had been part of the education system for centuries for good reason. Some people may not like direct instruction such as “repeat after me” but it helps students remember over the long term.

Such techniques ensure that children acquire fluency and automaticity in basic skills

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