Friday, June 22, 2012

Homework and working memory

There was a recent article in Education Week questioning the effectiveness of programs geared toward helping children improve their working memory. Working memory and processing speed are the two major "under-the-radar" learning problems I address in my book The Homework Trap. It is important to develop teaching models using the working memory children have, not the working memory we think they should have. Certainly, we are there to help and teach children and if there are methods to help them improve areas of weakness, that's fine. But we shouldn't punish them or fail them for characteristics they do not individually have. That's exactly what happens with homework trapped children when we demand they do things at home, outside the sight and control of their teachers, and factor the results in heavily and negatively into their grades.

Dr. Kenneth Goldberg is a clinical psychologist with 35 years of professional experience in dealing with many different psychological issues. He is the author of The Homework Trap: How to Save the Sanity of Parents, Students and Teachers and currently works in his own private practice.

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