Working memory is a key factor in learning and retaining information. It can be defined as stored information that is managed for a short period of time. We essentially hold on to specific information until we need to use it. The concept of working memory was discovered over 50 years ago. Serving as a key to learning, working memory contributes to tasks such as reading, problem-solving and navigation. Working memory is the part of the brain that monitors, coordinates, inputs, and decides what pieces of information to focus on. Researchers have found that when problem-solving and thinking, the prefrontal cortex increases inactivation. Working memory is certainly crucial in a school environment, as it is utilized by students on a daily basis. From figuring the meaning of a new word when reading a book to choosing which formula to apply to a math problem, working memory is certainly a necessary skill for academic success.
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