Challenge or automaticity?

robot-automaticity

Here is a very useful article about the types of practice and its uses. According to Daniel T. Willingham, there are situations when just practising to the level of perfection is not enough. In fact, if you only practise for a short while, even excellent knowledge will be forgotten very quickly. For long-term results what you need is overlearning (learning what is already known) and sustained practice. Now I’m thinking: what about stretching the learners, Demand High and all that? It seems that if we keep increasing the challenge all the time, overlearning cannot happen and so the knowledge has no opportunity to sink in deeper, and the skills do not become automatic…

What do you think, is there any middle ground between achieving automaticity and giving a proper learning challenge?

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