How to support a child with poor working memory
Working memory is the ability to temporarily hold and manipulate information in our minds. Children with poor working memory can have difficulty remembering and processing information, which can impact their learning and academic performance. As a parent, there are several strategies you can use to help your child improve their working memory.
Chunk information: Break information into smaller chunks to make it more manageable for your child. This will help them remember the information better. For example, if your child needs to remember a phone number, break it into smaller chunks of two or three numbers.
Repeat and reinforce: Encourage your child to repeat the information they need to remember. This will help reinforce the information in their working memory. You can also use memory games and exercises to help your child practice and strengthen their working memory.
Use visual aids: Visual aids, such as pictures, diagrams, and mind maps, can help your child remember information. Encourage your child to create visual representations of the information they need to remember, such as drawing a picture of a math problem or creating a mind map of a chapter in a book.
Break tasks into smaller steps: Large tasks can be overwhelming for children with poor working memory. Break tasks into smaller, more manageable steps to make it easier for your child to remember and complete the task.
Reduce distractions: Distractions can make it difficult for your child to focus on and remember information. Create a quiet and calm environment for your child to study and do their homework. Limit distractions, such as TV, music, or loud noises, and help your child stay focused on the task at hand. However, remember some children need background noise, try music, white noise or brown noise to see if it helps.
Some children need to move around to learn because their brains are wired to require more physical activity in order to process and retain information effectively. These children have what is known as a kinesthetic learning style, which means they learn best through hands-on experiences and physical movement.
Encourage healthy habits: A healthy diet, regular exercise, and good sleep habits can all help improve working memory. Encourage your child to eat healthy foods, get regular exercise, and establish a regular sleep routine to help improve their working memory.
Working Memory Games
Remember, improving working memory takes time and practice. Be patient and consistent in your efforts to help your child improve their working memory. With your support and encouragement, your child can develop the skills they need to succeed academically an Playing games can be an effective and fun way to help improve working memory in children. Here are some examples of games that can help improve working memory:
Simon: This classic game requires players to remember and repeat a sequence of lights and sounds. Each round, the sequence gets longer, challenging players to remember more and more information.
Concentration: This game requires players to remember the location of cards on a board. Players take turns flipping over two cards at a time, trying to find matching pairs. The player who finds the most matching pairs wins.
Memory Match: This game is similar to Concentration, but instead of cards, players use small objects, such as toy animals or figurines. Players take turns hiding the objects under cups or in a box and then try to remember and match the location of the objects.
Spot the Difference: This game requires players to remember the details of two similar pictures and identify the differences between them. Players can use a timer to add a challenge and encourage quick thinking and memory recall.
Word Chain: This game requires players to remember and add to a growing chain of words. Each player takes turns adding a word that starts with the last letter of the previous word. Players must remember the previous words in the chain to keep the game going.
Storytelling: This game requires players to remember and build upon a story. Each player takes turns adding a sentence to the story, building on what the previous player said. Players must remember the previous parts of the story to keep it coherent and engaging.
These games are just a few examples of the many fun and engaging activities that can help improve working memory in children. By incorporating games and exercises that challenge and strengthen working memory, parents and educators can help children develop the skills they need to succeed academically and in life.