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Spaced Practice


Mathematics Study Skills & Tools All Ages Strategy


Verbal Memory Visual Memory

Spaced Practice

If your student has weaker memory or crams the night before for important tests

Use It In Your Instructional Practice:

  1. Objective: Review essential content over multiple classes to ensure students build long-term retention.
  2. Review key concepts from previous lessons at the start of class.
  3. Repeat key points from the lesson throughout class to emphasize the importance and help with retention.
  4. Include the most important concepts, and related concepts from previous lessons into homework assignments so students continue to get repeated exposure.
  5. Continue to repeat and quiz the most important information over subsequent assignments and tests to ensure students remember it. Let students know you will quiz previous content so they are continuously reviewing key information.

Teach The Student Boost

  1. Explain why: Cramming, regardless of how much time you spend, is less effective than studying in smaller chunks of time over multiple days. When you space out your studying you are more likely to remember it for longer, which likely means less studying for a midterm or final exam.
  2. Encourage students to break up their studying for tests over several days rather than cramming the night before. Consider assigning studying for the test the daily homework for the week leading up to the test.
  3. Have students look at what they need to study and create a study schedule to space out the material over multiple days. Each day they should study a new chunk of material and practice previously covered content.

Understand Why It Is Important:

  1. Research on spaced practice shows that the more frequently one is exposed to the information the more likely it will embed in long-term memory. The active processing of recalling previously seen information and connecting it to known information consolidates it in long-term memory.
  2. All students benefit from seeing content repeated and spread out over cramming, and students with weaker memory will likely need more exposure than others for long-term retention.