Understanding Will - Part 2: I can't remember facts and processes


This is the second in a series of posts, Understanding Will,  in which we share what we have learnt about Will and how in understanding him better we have helped him to use different learning strategies.

Will said:

"I find it difficult to remember facts and ways of doing things."

What is going on in Will's brain?

Will has to encode, retrieve, hold and manipulate task relevant information using the mechanisms that control attention and the switching of attention. This is a complex, cognitive activity and it places high demands on my working memory.

Unless information is meaningful and interconnected and its relevance made clear to Will, he finds it difficult to select, manipulate and inhibit information. Inefficiencies in his attentional processes place a heavy burden on his working memory and Will may struggle to remember facts and processes.

The Impact

Will needs to understand information before he can remember and assimilate it. If he does not understand information, he struggles to hold, chunk, store, retrieve and transfer the isolated, unsupported facts and he is unlikely to remember it/them.

Will lacks relational understanding and this prevents him from recalling and applying knowledge.

Strategies that help Will learn

Will's retention of facts and processes is supported by modelling and promoting the development of his ability to use the following strategies:

  • Mnemonics and acronyms
  • Chunking
  • Categorization and associations
  • Visualisation strategies e.g. Mind Mapping, use of graphic organisers, icons and drawings and colour coding (Computer software can often be used for these. Will uses MindNode Pro for Mind Mapping)
  • Frequently reviewing and rehearsing processes and information using the above. Ex. Mind Maps

Anita Johnson


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