“Mental Models are structures that organise knowledge in the mind. Studies comparing embodied cognition approaches were found to have larger impacts on learning than traditional curriculum delivery.”
EEF, Cognitive Science Review
How can the blocks be used to promote metacognitive thinking?Download map
Utilise the blocks for promoting critical thinking and learning conversations.
Use the blocks to help children structure their ideas into a cohesive writing plan.Download lesson plan
As children use the blocks to organise their thoughts and ideas, they begin to understand how all the parts fit together. The block models become an engaging launchpad for thinking, talking and writing.
Using the blocks for building sentences
Creating better answers for exam preparation
Being playful writing descriptions and explanations
"It helped me in my English as I normally get stuck in the writing. When we do stories it allows me to set up my ideas first. If I make a mistake I can just move the blocks before writing it out." Woody, Year 7, The Maltings Academy.
From building a writing plan to joining sentences; our pioneering schools are seeing enhanced outcomes across the full domain of literacy.
Get a top level view of the block building concept. Use the presentation in your next staff meeting or share it with colleagues.
When children model with the blocks we are providing them with a creative space to 'think for themselves'. Providing opportunities to explore the structure of curriculum content brings with it a clear learning advantage.
Joining words to form phrases
Linking fragments to extend sentences
Organising points to build plans
Sequencing events to develop timelines
Joining concepts to create new ideas
When you need to tackle something that might be considered complex for your learners. This might be preparing for a piece of writing, consolidating a body of knowledge or checking for understanding.
The process can be used to 'stretch' higher attaining pupils or support a child who is struggling with grasping a new concept. There are significant implications for dyslexia and autism.
The universal nature of the concept means that we have schools from all walks of life. These include:
1) Schools that want an engaging way of supporting their disadvantaged learners.
2) Schools that are focused on developing lifelong learning traits such as critical thinking and collaboration.
3) Schools that want to build cultures of thinking and address classroom apathy.
The toolkits are perfect for simplifying any important concept or task. This could be in English, Science or the Humanities. It's useful for any body of knowledge that has a clear structure.