Tips to Improve Working Memory of Elementary Students

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Executive function skills are highly crucial for the success of students. It is a set of mental skills ranging from working memory, flexible thinking, and decision-making power. There is no denying the fact that students perform well in the classroom with executive function skills. 

Everybody needs these skills to conduct day-to-day operations. The trouble with these skills can make it harder for you to focus and manage all your tasks. You must have seen some skillful students organize, prioritize, understand different stances, regulate emotions, and pay attention. 

It is all indicates that they have strong executive function skills. However, you must be aware that students with weak working memories face many problems in the classroom. Such a kind of memory supports you make judgments. It can hold information temporarily. Although teachers and psychologists are aware of the importance and role of working memory before the age of online classes, it has become a significant subject to discuss because of shifting from classroom teaching to online teaching amid the pandemic. 

Students with weak working memories struggle with the withholding of the subject in online classes. When it comes to online teaching, students need to be more active, interactive, and understand new communication methods, and it lacks visuals. 

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One of the significant challenges for teachers is that no alternative is available to compensate for the real classroom environment. Children with weak working memory use clues from their classmates to memorize information, which is impossible with online coaching. 

It is difficult to fill the gap. However, it has encouraged experts to think about strengthening working memory in weak students in small classes. Here are the most efficient ways to do it…

Maintain Predictable Habit

Since students with weak working memory find it challenging to hold different pieces of information, you should try to use a predictable routine method. Then, when there is a routine that students are aware of, they can use the little space to store different information. 

You should use recycling structures for different types of content. Since we will use the same system repeatedly, students will be able to focus on content more freely. 

Be precise while communicating.

You will also have to focus on your language as you do with content. Note that you are teaching students of elementary level. That’s why the way you communicate with them should be very simple. When you assign them a task, you should be clear with what you want to get done from them. 

Ensure that you try to find the best possible way to understand what they are supposed to do. Try to give them specific and brief directions. It is better if you are repetitive because it can help them know what you are asking them. 

For instance, suppose you have given them a table with 1 to 50 numbers, and all numbers are written multiple times. You want them to tell you the number of times five is written in the table. In this case, instead of narrating the whole scenario that “the table has 1 to 50 numbers and each number…” you should say “cross 5 in the table”. 

It will let them understand that wherever five is written, they have to cross it. One of the significant advantages of using brief communication is students will immediately what they are expected to do. 

The methods mentioned earlier can help kids improve their working memory. Since kids love playing games, parents should encourage them to love games that help bolster their working memory. Of course, you will have to invest money if you want to gain something. If you are running out of money, you can take out loans for bad credit, no guarantor, and benefits.

Paper design plays a paramount role.

When you give a task to students on a worksheet, it is crucial to ensure that they are not struggling with organizing the blank space. Make sure that you do not give them a worksheet with a vacant room. 

The blank space cannot help students with weak working memory find out what the task is about and what they are supposed to do. Here are visual cues. For instance, you should use bullet points, boldfaced text, and lines to organize your thinking. 

When they notice bullet points in the worksheet, they know that we are to write the answer in bullets, and when they see lines, they realize they have to write a detailed explanation. Giving the worksheet with space arrangement will not let them be confused. 

They do not have to struggle with using the working memory to get the direction for the task, but they can organize their thinking. It will be much better if you follow a predictable pattern. It is because students will be able to think with more efficiency.  

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