Educational Psychology in the Classroom


1 - Know your students

As this type of learning occurs when students are able to contextualise their knowledge and create new areas of knowledge it is important to first know what stage each student in your classroom is at. As such, hold an indivdual discovery meeting with each student at the beginning of the year. Ask each student in your class the same set of questions based on the stage of knowledge they should fall into. Assess each students answer and place them in their actual stage.

2 - Structure your learning for all stages

Once you know where each of your students sit when you complete classroom activities try to split the students into groups. Ensure that these groups are regularly changing and, at times, a mix of students from each stage as students will learn well from each other. Structure the activity so that each group has the opportunity to contextualise the activity in the knowledge they already have and then to build on that to create new knowledge.

3 - The Memory Game

Display seven to ten items in front of the classroom for about 20 seconds (on a table or on the interactive whiteboard). Ask the students to commit them to memory, then remove the items. Ask the students to write down what they have seen.

4 - The ...... Song

Teach your students a simple song that helps them to remember a list of items, such as prime ministers names, state capitals, or human body parts. Make sure that you include movement and rhyme.

5 - Week review

Each student must choose a topic to discuss with the class that has been learnt during the week. The topic can be from any subject area and is their choice. Each child must then summarise what they have learnt during the week and then pose a question that has occured to them regarding this topic area, ie something they have not yet learnt but would like to discover an answer to. The student then does some independant research into this and discusses the findings with the class to see if they can go further with this. This activity can also be done within smaller groups.

 Cognitivist Lesson Plan - view here

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