How I use SuperMemo with my 6-year-old (video)

Comments, discussion, questions welcome.

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About the author

Larry Sanger had written 163 articles for Larry Sanger Blog

I call myself an "Internet Knowledge Organizer." I started Wikipedia.org, Citizendium.org, WatchKnowLearn.org, ReadingBear.org, and Infobitt. I write about education and the Internet from a broadly philosophical point of view.

2 Responses to "How I use SuperMemo with my 6-year-old (video)"
  1. Reply Anthony Alcantara April 19, 2017 05:31 am

    Hi Larry,

    I’m a great admirer of your blog and your dedication to homeschooling your children. I have a 6-year-old, too, and I’m trying to use spaced repetition also as I homeschool her. Do you still use Supermemo with your kids until now? How’s it going? Do you still think it’s a good investment of time? Also, how much time do you dedicate per day for Supermemo reviews?

    Hope to hear from you. Thank you very much.

    Regards,

    Anthony

    • Reply Larry Sanger April 20, 2017 20:35 pm

      Hi Anthony,

      I started with H. (who is now almost 11) at age 6 with SuperMemo. I made questions for him until 2-3 years ago, but now he makes his own questions. He does review for about 20-30 minutes per day these days—100 questions, regardless of how many the system “wants” him to do.

      I should probably update that blog post. But very briefly, I do think it’s a good idea, but it’s not a panacea and maybe not as awesome as I thought it would be when we first started. Because he has made so many questions and we don’t want to take too long on review every day, his memory rate is something like 80% rather than 93% which is what I get when I review all the questions I’m supposed to (for my study of programming, which I’m doing, as it happens). So he doesn’t have perfect recall of everything he’s learned. But does he have improved recall, surprising recall, unusual recall? I would say so. I would say it’s a definite advantage. It’s just not a wonder-drug.

      One other thing to bear in mind is that the better you understand a question you’re putting in SuperMemo—the less “rote” the memory is, the more rooted in comprehension—the easier it will be to remember and the more meaningful the learning. This isn’t to say that you can’t benefit from rote memory; I have myself benefited from memorizing programming factoids that I understood only months after I first kinda-sorta “learned” them. But the more you limit yourself to facts well understood, the more effective (and easy) a tool like SuperMemo will be.

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