Retrieval Practice

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Retrieval Practice at Bury

As an evidence-informed school, we use retrieval practice in many aspects of our day-to-day teaching. At its most basic, it is simply recalling information that has been previously learned. The more we do this, the easier it is to recall the information. “Using your memory, shapes your memory.” (Robert Bjork)


We use retrieval practice with our knowledge organisers to ensure the minimum content of a subject is understood by all children. Our flash cards used at the start and end of Bury Rangers is another an example of retrieval practice and supports the children where something has not been taught for a significant period and therefore the retrieval strength is low.


You can support this further at home by:

  • Providing the opportunity for 5 minutes daily on Numbots or TTRockstars. This is a great way to see retrieval practice in action and shows how ‘little and often’ can make a huge difference to a child’s learning.
  • completing the weekly maths homework tasks. These provide retrieval practice for the previous week’s learning. By repeating these again at a later date you will be supporting your child to further use retrieval practice and to embed the learning into their long-term memory.   
  • listening to your child read their phonetically decodable reading books (particularly in Little Owls and Kestrels) that the children bring home each day. This provides the children with the necessary time they need to practise their new phonics learning.
  • asking your child questions about aspects of their knowledge organisers either using the knowledge organisers directly or using the corresponding flashcards that are on the website

If you come across any other ways of using retrieval practice that you think would help us at school, please let your child’s class teacher know.