How is Deadpool involved?!
What evidence is there of Socrates’ principles, and how can I apply them?
Last post we explored an observed and observable effect, now termed the Deadpool Effect (see part 3).
As far as we can work out, preliminary formulae to create this effect goes as follows:
Psychological safety + student agency + low stakes = The Deadpool Effect
This metacognitive effect of the RM system can be further strengthened with the use of departmentally-written knowledge organisers. With any school VLE or online platform – designate a space for them. Students can be made aware of their existence and so that once gaps in knowledge have been spotted, the ball can be in their court to improve their knowledge.
If this does not convince you – there is also a far more pragmatic case for its implementation. Whiteboards, Socrative, Plickers and the like – all require set up and time investment. There is also a substantially large number of moving parts. “Do the students have the correct equipment? Whiteboard pens? Do they have ink? Who used the whiteboards last? Where are they?”. Not only is this argument rooted in the amount of money that can be saved from the departmental wallet, but the lower cost on the minds of the classroom teachers. Sanity, time, worry – all saved from the frenzied getting together of the appropriate resources before school begins.
The cognitive load on the learner must also be a strain. Between the teacher asking the question, the business in the room, the movement and sensory input of 30-odd students getting ready to write on a whiteboard to have their knowledge judged, raised arm-length on a board above one’s head. This can be solved – we can reduce the amount of atmospheric stimulus in the room, allowing the learner to focus on the activity for which they are there.
The removal of these moving parts not only benefits the teacher, but the student. If even the most talented minds can only hold 6-7 pieces of information in the working memory, it makes sense to abolish the juggling act and return to simplicity.
TL;DR – While the research backing behind RM is multi-faceted, drawing from many recent works of educational thought, implementation is simple. The process is simple. Since testing can be an arm of AFL, we can streamline and rationalise the whole AFL process. In cutting out the extraneous, moving parts, we can reduce cognitive load of our learners, and use our tools to increase and elevate retention, engagement and behaviour – the learning trifecta.
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