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20 October 2017 by Sarah Mintey

Mary Myatt discusses knowledge organisers in one of our new CPD films

What’s the difference between a knowledge curriculum and other curricula? A knowledge curriculum specifies, in meticulous detail, the exact facts, dates, events, characters, concepts and precise definitions that all pupils are expected to master in long-term memory. Many teachers underestimate the value of specifying (and sequencing) such detail. This is why we have designed our science curriculum platform solution in the way we have. The most powerful tool in the arsenal of the curriculum designer is the knowledge organiser. Our rocket words enable pupils to visit the key facts and words for each lesson, recalling and mastering the key knowledge so it is committed to their long term memory.

Clarity for teachers

Knowledge organisers clarify for everyone, from the Headteacher to brand new teachers, exactly what is being taught. 

It is often hard to otjherwise choose the most valuable content that we want all pupils to remember for ten years and beyond. And for each unit, we discipline ourselves to distil it into our rocket words. Without our system knowledge organisers provide the best alternative solution.

When a new teacher starts in a school, one of the first questions they have is ‘what do I teach?’ At a single glance, knowledge organisers answer that. Everything our pupils need to know for the year is set out clearly in advance.

Memory for pupils

The ideal practice when using knowledge organisers is to issue them to all pupils at the start of each unit to help them remember what they’re learning. No longer out of sight, out of mind: instead of leaving behind previous units’ content, teachers can recap quickly and easily in lessons. Instead of forgetting all about it, pupils continually revisit and retrieve prior learning from their memories.

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