Did you know that working memory is now suggested to be one of the best indicators of academic success? Working memory is a cognitive functioning that enables an individual to remember and use relevant information to complete an activity. Information enters the brain through the senses and our conscious awareness processes and makes sense of the information through thoughts, inner visualizations, and the inner voice. It also enables learners to hold multiple pieces of information in the mind and manipulate them. It is often described as a mental workspace that helps students stay focused, block distractions and stay abreast of their surroundings.
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What is the Working Memory Process?
- Attending to the immediate experience
- Accessing prior information
- Holding and processing information
- Satisfying current goals.
What are Some Fun Facts about Working Memory?
- Working memory focuses attention on experiences in the moment.
- Working memory only lasts a few seconds.
- Working memory can hold about four items.
- Working memory is a better indicator of success than I.Q.
What are the Symptoms of a Weak Working Memory?
- Seldom volunteers and difficulty answering direct questions.
- Difficulties following a series of directives.
- Challenges when learning new concepts and vocabulary.
- Trouble completing tasks to completion.
- Appears unmotivated, inattentive and is easily distracted.
- Difficulty remembering passwords, phone numbers, and other rote memory activities.
- Trouble organizing sounds, sentences, and stories.
- Problems conducting mental math and problem-solving.
- Challenges with note-taking or copying from the board.
- Difficulties maintaining stamina during complex tasks.
How Can I Strengthen Working Memory?
If you would like to learn more about how to strengthen working memory, click here.
Dr. Erica Warren is the author, illustrator, and publisher of multisensory educational materials at Good Sensory Learning. She is also the director of Learning to Learn and Learning Specialist Courses.
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