Psychology Applied to Teaching
, Tenth Edition
| Classroom Activities
Chapter 8: Information-Processing Theory
Activity 1: Imagery and the Method of Loci
Activity 2: Rate Your Favorite Instructional Tactics
Activity 3: Metacognition Web
Title: Imagery and the Method of Loci
Instructional Strategy: Creative/Critical Thinking
This is an activity to help students recognize the usefulness of imagery techniques and mnemonic devices.
- Apply imagery and mnemonic techniques to your learning.
- Develop a mnemonic or imagery technique for your classrooms.
Review the following theorists from the textbook, in order:
Select ten sites, one for each theorist, around the classroom on which you can "hook" an image. Sites include corners, desks, walls, ceiling tiles, light switches, boards, whatever the room allows.
|B. F. Skinner||Lawrence Kohlberg|
|Albert Bandura||Carol Gilligan|
|Erik Erikson||Howard Gardner|
|Jean Piaget ||Robert Sternberg|
|Lev Vygotsky ||Jerome Bruner|
As a class or in small groups, create images that are evocative and creative that illustrate a connection between the theorist and one main idea from his/her theory. Images should make sense and be meaningful for each student in the class.
Go through these sites in order several times. Have individual students name ten influential theorists and one main point of each theory.
- On a sheet of paper list the usefulness of the method of loci and imagery techniques in recalling the list of theorists.
- Have students use the method of loci and visualization to memorize the stages of Erikson's theory or Gardner's multiple intelligences.
- Use only five theorists for a more efficient illustration.
- Ask students during the next class meeting to name the theorists. Discuss the effectiveness of the method for long-term memory.
Title: Rate Your Favorite Learning Tactics
Instructional Strategy: Critical Thinking/Creative Thinking
This activity is designed to help students become interested in instructional tactics driven from information-processing theory.
- Introduce instructional tactics driven by information-processing theory.
The instructor will distribute a worksheet with the following content.
Read about the instructional tactics below, and rate your favorite as number 1, your second favorite as 2. Continue numbering each item. Add any additional tactics you might find helpful.
Method of Loci
Self and Peer Questioning
Combine the rankings for the class to determine the most and least useful tactics on the list. Discuss why some tactics are favored over others. Did some students give certain tactics a lower ranking because they were unfamiliar with them or never tried using them? Encourage students to create examples of effective uses of the least favorable tactics.
- Share stories with the class that explain why a certain tactic is your favorite or your least favorite.
- Describe how you could use at least three of the tactics to study the some body of information.
- Interview three to four students outside of class about their favorite study strategies. Gather examples of how they use these strategies. Use the list above as a guide. Share findings in class.
Title: Metacognition Web
Instructional Strategy: Creative Thinking
This activity is designed to help students generate ideas as to why metacognition is an important concept for classroom teachers.
- Generate ideas on how metacognitive skills can be used.
On a piece of white paper, draw an oval in the center. In the oval write "Metacognition is the knowledge we have about how we learn." Then write down how students can use metacognition to regulate their learning webbing out from the oval. Describe benefits that metacognitive skills specifically bring to your subject area or the age level of the students you will be teaching. Post your metacognition webs on the walls of the classroom and share them with other students.
- The instructor will draw the oval on the board and the class can brainstorm ideas that spin off of it. After the brainstorming session, reflectively write about the metacognition activities that you might use in your future teaching.
- Interview your neighbor about how they have used metacognition during their college years. What about high school? Be in pairs with your interviewee and introduce your partner to the class. Then share the stories you heard from your partner.