Teaching- The Art of Changing the Brain

I have a feeling that if your frequenting this blog you’re probably committed to being a life long learner. That being said,  here is a piece on teaching and the art of changing the brain.

Article Introduction (Via SharpBrains.com)

This is a book for both teachers and parents (because parents are also teachers!) Written with the earnestness of first-person experience and reflection, and a lifetime of expertise in biology, Zull makes a well-rounded case for his ideas. He offers those ideas for your perusal, providing much supporting evidence, but he doesn’t try to ram them into your psyche. Rather, he practices what he preaches by engaging you with stories, informing you with fact, and encouraging your thinking by the way he posits his ideas. Zull doesn’t lecture here; rather, he discusses his ideas so you can follow their progression. The impetus for his ideas stem from David Kolb’s 1984 book, Experiential Learning. Kolb’s model contains four portions:

– engaging in a concrete experience
– following it with reflective observation
– developing an abstract conceptualization based upon the reflection
– actively experimenting based upon the abstract

Article Excerpts and Examples (Via SharpBrain.com)

“Zull spends the bulk of the 250 pages exploring the biology and practice behind “creating conditions that lead to change in a learner’s brain.” He provides a list of ten strategies (page 129), based upon the biology of the brain, which can help in making those changes. These strategies apply to parents who are trying to parent, as well as to our own learning process, for ideally we are all life-long learners.”

1. Watch for inherent networks (natural talents) and encourage their practice.
2. Repeat, repeat, repeat!
3. Arrange for “firing together.” Associated things should happen together.
4. Focus on sensory input that is “errorless.”
5. Don’t stress mistakes. Don’t reinforce neuronal networks that aren’t useful.
6. Try to understand existing networks and build on them. Nothing is new.
7. Misconnected networks are most often just incomplete. Try to add to them.
8. Be careful about resurrecting old networks; error dies hard.
9. Construct metaphors and insist that your students build their own metaphors.
10. Use analogies and similes, too.

Click here to read the full article on teaching and the brain

About Miguel Barbosa

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22. October 2008 by Miguel Barbosa
Categories: Curated Readings, Psychology & Sociology | Leave a comment

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