Deliberate Practice Doesn’t Align with Schooling (Well: Not Precisely)

Anders Ericsson’s model of “deliberate practice” offers wise guidance in creating expertise. But, it might not apply to the work that teachers do in schools every day… Continue reading

Mind in Motion: How Action Shapes Thought by Barbara Tversky

Mind in Motion: How Action Shapes Thought is the recent book by Barbara Tversky, an emerita professor at Stanford University, a professor of psychology at Teachers College at Columbia University, and a past president of the Association of Psychological Science.  In

Retrieval Practice is GREAT. Can We Make It Better?

Retrieval practice and common sense add up to a winning combination. Which means: they help students remember more. Continue reading

Executive Function Isn’t What You Think It Is (Maybe)

As a soccer coach, I want my students to get better at soccer. As an English teacher, I want my students to get better at English. And, as a hip-hop dance instructor, I want my students to get better at hip-hop dance. To accomplish

What’s Better than Attention? Attention + LEARNING!

We know that exercise breaks help young students pay attention. Do those breaks help older students pay attention, AND LEARN? Continue reading

What’s the Ideal Size for Online Discussion Groups?

We’re all learning lots about online teaching these days: new software (Zoom), new vocabulary (“asynchronous”), new fads (teaching in pajamas). In many cases, we’re just going with our instincts here. Relying on our experience, we know to [insert technique here].

“How to Study Less and Learn More”: Explaining Learning Strategies to our Students

Because cognitive science gives us such good guidance about learning, we want to share that information with our students. “Study THIS WAY!” we cry. “Research says so!” Alas, all too often, students don’t follow our advice. A key part of

Permission to Feel: Unlocking the Power of Emotions to Help our Kids, Ourselves, and Our Society Thrive

How are you feeling? We ask this question often because our feelings are an important source of information about our internal lives, yet too often we do not ask or answer with sincerity. Marc Brackett, a Yale professor and Director

What’s Better Than Caffeine (And Doesn’t Require Electrodes)?

Is there an easy way to help students use their working memory more effectively? Do we have to zap their brains with electricity to accomplish this goal? Continue reading

The Limits of “Desirable Difficulties”: Catching Up with Sans Forgetica

Can a hard-to-read font improve student learning? That’s a very strange question, but in 2019 we had some reasons to think the answer was “yes.” Just published research updates our understanding. Continue reading