Cognitive Science and Advanced Reasoning

Teachers can implement cognitive and reasoning principles to promote learning across all content areas in the middle grades. The cognitive principles of learning are based on reports from (a) the National Academy of Sciences, 1 (b) a practice guide for teachers by the Institute of Education Sciences in the U.S. Department of Education on Organizing Instruction and Study to Improve Student Learning, 2 (c) and a joint initiative between the Association of Psychological Sciences and the American Psychological Association on Lifelong Learning at Work and at Home.3 The recommendations here reflect the wisdom of these reports, which are based on scientific evidence, rather than being consensus opinions of experts. What follows are seven key principles and related practices from this research.