Metacognition is coming to Norwood!
As educators, we want our pupils to not only acquire knowledge but also develop the skills to think about how they learn and overcome problems. This is known as metacognition. Metacognition is a big word for something most of us do every day without even noticing: Thinking about our own thoughts. Reflecting on our thoughts is a big part of understanding our feelings and learning new things. In primary school, metacognition is an essential skill that helps children to become more independent learners.
We are excited to share with you how we are beginning to incorporate metacognition into our curriculum. Starting in September 2022, staff at Norwood began learning more about developing and understanding the role of metacognition in lessons, working with a consultant from ‘Thinking Matters’. We are now ready to introduce the concept of metacognition to the children through a variety of activities such as videos and group discussions. Our launch assemblies in April 2023 were about our ‘Brilliant Brains’ and different learning behaviours such as: curiosity, resilience, reflection, flexible thinking and good communication
You can see these behaviours on our Meta Learner target and we have a new dojo to award for pupils demonstrating these learning behaviours.
One way that metacognition is encouraged in the classroom is through the use of "learning to learn" activities. These activities are designed to help children think about how they learn best, and to develop strategies for retaining and recalling information. For example, your child may be encouraged to make diagrams, to use flashcards, to explain their thinking or to test themselves on key facts during a lesson. Teachers model ‘think aloud’ strategies to demonstrate to how they think and make decisions.
We will also teach our students how to ask questions that promote critical thinking, such as "What do I already know about this?", "Do I understand this?" "What did I learn today?", “How can I remember this?”, "What could I have done differently?", "How can I use what I learned today in the future?".
As parents, there are ways you can support your child's development of metacognitive skills. Asking questions kick starts the brain into searching for answers to a task. Give your child some space to reflect on their thinking. Give them time to think about their answer and ask “Can you tell me more about why you think that?” Encourage them to think about how they can use their understanding to change things in the future: “How could you handle/do that differently next time?”
Further support and guidance:
Use the link below to play games to improve metacognition.
Further Reading on Metacognition: