Make it sticky: helping students to remember technical vocabulary


Helping students to remember technical vocabulary…

Class Teaching

The 15 Minute Forum was led by Andy Tharby and focussed on a simple, but effective technique of helping students to remember technical vocabulary.

As Daniel Willingham states:

“… memories are inaccessible mostly due to missing or ambiguous cues. Thus, to minimize forgetting, we [need to] focus on ways to ensure that we have cues and that they are distinctive.” – What will improve a student’s memory? (2008)

In addition to this, students are being asked to remember an increasing amount of and increasingly challenging Tier 3 vocabulary. The new GCSE specifications demand that students use accurate subject-specific vocabulary in their writing to reach the higher grades. But, more importantly, having a knowledge and understanding of this ‘technical’ language will help increase student’s social mobility beyond GCSE.

However, technical vocabulary is an issue that students often struggle with. As Andy stated, there are two reasons for this:

  • students sometimes…

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