Old-fashioned ways of teaching like reciting times-tables and verb
conjugations are better than trendy new teaching methods, say
Researchers believe that reciting facts shortly after learning
them is better than many new-style educational methods.
The "simple recall" seems to cement the knowledge "in memory" so
it is more permanently embedded for use later, the Telegraph
reported, citing a study in the journal Science.
Many modern teachers rely heavily on learning techniques like
concept or mind mapping to help students retain the most from the
texts they read, the study said.
This involves drawing elaborate diagrams to represent relationship
between words, ideas and tasks.
But two experiments, carried out by Jeffrey Karpicke at Purdue
University, Indiana, US, concluded that this was less effective
than constant informal testing and reciting.
Karpicke asked around 100 college students to recall in writing,
in no particular order, as much as they could from what they had
just read from science material.
Although most students expected to learn more from the mapping
approach, the retrieval exercise actually worked much better to
strengthen both short-term and long-term memory, the study said.