Throughout the world there are students who struggle with their school-based learning, despite multiple interventions in place. Yes there are always elements of poverty, genetics, home-life, social interaction and what habitus they bring with them to school. However to simply put the struggle down to any one of these things is irresponsible and deficit theorizing. The best place a teacher can start from is examining their own practice.
After discussion with a colleague I have begun to wonder whether a part of this issue stems from a lack of ‘memory fitness’ of sorts. Is the underlying issue in the context of school that the students are getting the results into their short term memory but something blocks it from moving into the long term memory? Are there exercises that can be used to develop the ability to shift short term memory to long term?
My question therefore is: how can memory exercises be used to improve long term retention of strategy and number knowledge and what evidence can support this?