The purpose of Teaching Metacognitive Strategies is to provide students explicit teacher instruction for a specific metacognitive (learning) strategy.
What are they?
First, a metacognitive strategy is a memorable "plan of action" that provides students an easy to follow procedure for solving a particular math problem.
Second, metacognitive strategies are taught using explicit teaching methods.
Metacognitive strategies include the student's thinking as well as their physical actions.
Some of the most common metacognitive strategies come in the form of mnemonics which are meaningful words where the letters in the word each stand for a step in a problem-solving process or for important pieces of information about a particular topic of interest.
Metacognitive strategies are memorable and it must accurately represent the learning task.
Choose an appropriate metacognitive strategy for the math skill (For a list of metacognitive strategies by math concept area clickVideos and Resourceson the top menu, then clickMetacognitive Strategies).
Describe and model the strategy at least three times. Use those instructional components emphasized in explicit teacher modeling (see the instructional strategy Explicit Teacher Modeling.)
Check student understanding. Ensure they understand both the strategy and how to use it.
Provide ample opportunities for students to practice using the strategy.
Provide timely corrective feedback and remodel use of strategy as needed.
Provide students with strategy cue sheets (or post the strategy in the classroom) as students begin independently using the strategy. Fade the use of cues as students demonstrate they have memorized the strategy and how (as well as when) to use it. (*Some students will benefit from a "strategy notebook" in which they keep both the strategies they have learned and the corresponding math skill they can use each strategy for.)
Make a point of reinforcing students for using the strategy appropriately.
Implicitly model using the strategy when performing the corresponding math skill in class.