This week, the topics included exploring how brain restructuring can affect learning functionality; a foray into the information processing theory, and the benefit of using problem-solving methods during the learning process. Specifically, this week’s requirements are to review two sites related to these topics.
Through various searches on this week’s topics I can across a site maintained by Eric Chudler, titled “Neuroscience for Kids” (2013), created for students and teachers looking to learn about the nervous system, including how the brain and spinal cord interact to relay our bodies messages. Content is available in several languages beside English, including Spanish, Russian, Dutch, Chinese and others. The site was easy to navigate with clear links to a wealth of information set in a TOC format. For teachers, the site includes several interactive experiments, Brain games (i.e. short term memory tests), and coloring books available in print or online format. The site also features links to the latest neuroscience news, books, articles and online contests. The site is current, last updated on May 17, 2013.
Chudler, E. (2013). Neuroscience for kids. Retrieved from University of Washington website: http://faculty.washington.edu/chudler/neurok.html
Christopher Taibbi, M. A. T., discusses how advances in brain research and related technological advances are changing how classroom instruction is delivered. The article discusses in some detail the brains complex structure and how the brain retains information. The article also discusses several ways teachers can differentiate instruction including expressing concepts in a visual manner and using visual stimulus. According to Taibbi (2004), all humans share one trait: the brain craves visual images. I think a great example is music; for most hearing a song brings visual memories of times past. I can hear a song from the 70’s and vividly recall exactly what I was doing at a point in time. The article is within the PBS Teachers site ‘Early Childhood Article Archive’ and has links that include best practices of integrating the internet into the classroom and other general instruction strategies. I highlighted Taibbi’s article since it was closely related to this week’s discussion.
Taibbi, C. (2004). Teaching with the brain in mind. PBS Teachers, Retrieved from http://www.pbs.org/teachers/earlychildhood/articles/brain.html
**“Neuroscience should be required for all students [of education] . . . to familiarize them with the orienting concepts [of] the field, the culture of scientific inquiry, and the special demands of what qualifies as scientifically based education research.” – (Eisenhart & DeHaan, as cited in Willis, 2012, para. 1)
In the process of researching, I came across sites that promote the study of neuroscience, some advocate all students in educational programs and current teachers to be more informed of how the brain learns. You might find this article interesting “A Neurologist Makes the Case for Teaching Teachers About the Brain” by Judy Willis MD.
Willis, J. (2012, July 27). A neurologist makes the case for teaching teachers about the brain. [Web log message]. Retrieved from http://www.edutopia.org/blog/neuroscience-higher-ed-judy-willis