We have all done the dreaded flashcards for math facts, sight words or letters/sounds. Usually we have a pile of “knowns” and a pile of “unknowns”. Typically we practice the pile of “unknowns” because we think those are the ones that we need to focus on. However research shows that if we surround the brain with KNOWN information it will help the UNKNOWN stick. To be exact we need 70% KNOWN to 30% UNKNOWN when learning to process new information in order to keep it within our WORKING MEMORY. Mix that in with the correct amount of REPETITION and we can get this intervention to stick even better. Follow these simple 5 RULES for “Sandwiching” and you will see this intervention sore new heights!
Rule #1: Keep it within the child’s WORKING MEMORY ZONE
Each “0” equals a new bit of information. So a 5 year old can hold in 3 new bits of information at a time.
Rule #2: Repetition Repetition Repetition
Repetition based on students IQ (a lot more than you think)
Rule #3: Be sure to remember 70% to 30% and the order in which the brain will remember
Sandwich 2 Knowns in between each Unknown…it will stick better plain and simple!
Rule #4: Keep it organized and systematic
Keeping the letters, math facts, sight words, etc in an organized box or ring will make it easier to use more frequently
Rule #5: Get it in when you can!
Use a clear name tag badge and slide in the new “unknown” information to help get in the repetition needed to learn it faster!
Remember to use this strategy with any new piece of unknown information (colors, shapes, letter, sounds, sight words, phonics words, math facts, vocabulary, for ELL students, etc.)