Strategies to Overcome Problems With the Help of Working Memory

Memory is crucial for learning. You cannot imbibe a new concept unless you have a strong memory. Before you understand what you can do to overcome with challenges associated with working memory, you should understand its basic model.

Your memory is divided into two parts: working memory and long-term memory. Working memory comes into action when you are actively thinking about something. For instance, when you have to solve a problem, you will consciously think about it.

Such tasks are associated with working memory. However, actions that do not require much attention are associated with long-term memory. This memory helps you store facts, skills and procedures. For instance, tying your shoelaces is a part of long-term memory.

This is because you have done it zillions of times, and hence you do not need to think about it actively. When you come across doing something you have previously done, you can easily manage to do it.

Why is working memory often impaired?

Working memory is a small amount of information held in your mind temporarily that you need for cognitive tasks. Experts suggest that training working memory is associated with the improved learning experience of students.

This memory is connected to intelligence, problem solving and comprehension. This is a very important part of memory because this leads to long-term memory. You will need working memory to learn how a particular thing is done that gets stored then in your brain and become a part of long-term memory.

Further, working memory varies by age. Most of the students have a problem with working memory. Here is what affects working memory:

Distraction is one of the significant causes affecting working memory. For instance, if you have focused hard to solve a problem but suddenly someone has started talking to you. This breaks the chain of your thoughts. In this situation, your working memory is affected.

Another stumbling block to working memory is confusion. Your brain is not good at leaving out unnecessary data. It will be much easier to answer a simple mathematical query, for instance, what is 3X4, than answering how much four bags of tea would cost you in total if each bag costs only £3. As the problem becomes more complex, you would start being confused.

Another factor that affects your working memory is the overload of information. When you come across too much information, you will definitely get confused. In fact, by the time you complete reading the given text, you will forget the beginning information.

These factors can affect your working memory. However, it is crucial to identify the signs or symptoms that indicate that you have a problem with the working capital. Some signs that show that there are some problems with working memory include but are not limited to:

  • Difficulty in recalling information, including facts
  • You need instructions repetitively
  • You often have issues with staying on a task a little longer

Strategies that can remove the barriers to working memory

Here are the strategies that can help you improve your students’ working memory:

Make the problem simpler

As you know, the human brain is not good at tackling complex problems, especially if they are overloaded with unnecessary information. Though it may not be tricky for all of the students, most of them have a problem filtering out.

This is why you should be careful while designing a problem. You should simplify it so your students can better understand the problem. Note that your ultimate purpose is to teach them how a certain thing is done so they can learn, and once they learn, it will automatically become a part of their long-term memory.

Try to involve practical teaching so students can engage with the teaching method. Practical learning is always better than textual learning. You can invest so you can teach using practical means in various tools. For instance, you can take out loans for bad credit with no guarantor.

Leverage the power of knowledge

Knowledge is extremely important when it comes to solving complex problems. Studies have found that children respond to the problem in a better way when they know about the terms used in the text. For instance, if you have given them a text about a bridge, children who understand what it is will likely comprehend it in a better way than those who do not know.

This is why it is crucial for teachers to tell everything given in the text so children can understand well what it is about. Though it is crucial to explain the meaning, using resources to strengthen their working memory is essential.

There are several resources you can use to improve the working memory of your students, like cards, wall charts, and the like. You should not shy from investing money in these resources.

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Break it down

The best way is to tackle the problem with working memory is that you should break down the task. Sometimes a task involves a lot of things, and it makes it confusing for your students. You should try to break down the entire task into bits so your students can handle it smoothly and efficiently.

This does not put a lot of pressure on their cognitive ability. For instance, you can provide them with instructions in bullet points. You can highlight different information, so your students know what exactly they need to pick.

The bottom line

Working memory is essential when it comes to learning new things. However, it isn’t very easy, and since it varies by child, you cannot be sure about its efficacy.

You should try to train the working memory of your students, and you can do it by following the tips mentioned above.

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