Making History Stick Part 3: using the question effectively

Clio et cetera

In this sequence of blog posts I am taking some of the principles with which Brown, Roediger and McDaniel concluded their book Make It Stick and asking how these might apply in the history classroom. In my previous post I looked at the idea of ‘spaced retrieval’and how this might operate within a history curriculum. I want in this post to look at how common approaches amongst history teachers to medium-term planning and pedagogy within a sequence of lessons might be in keeping with some of the principles that Brown et al advance.

It is fairly common practice these days for history teachers to structure a sequence of lessons around answering one overarching question, often called a ‘key question’ or an ‘enquiry question’. The term ‘enquiry question’ is a little misleading as the word ‘enquiry’ carries connotations of discovering learning and limited teacher instruction. For my purposes here, however…

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