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Educating the Whole Child? Consider How Their Brains Work

Ed Surge – Tina Nazerian

“Children often live in two different worlds. That was the premise of a video Akimi Gibson, the vice president and education publisher of Sesame Workshop (the nonprofit behind Sesame Street), showed the audience at the EdSurge Fusion conference in Burlingame, Calif. In the video, singer Ed Sheeran, flanked by Sesame Street characters, sings about the contrast between life at home and life at school for a kid. At home, a child can move around more and talk when she wants. School is a more controlled environment where she has an assigned seat and has to raise her hand.” (more)

Scientists to Understand Effects of Chinese Language on Cognitive Performance

Tasnim News – Staff Writer

“Hospitals and universities in Shanghai and Shenzhen, Guangdong province, are the main participants in the joint study commissioned by the Shanghai Research Center for Brain Science and Brain-Inspired Intelligence. They will carry out clinical studies into brain development, cognitive learning processes and brain-related diseases, said Zhang Xu, vice-president of the Shanghai branch of the Chinese Academy of Sciences and executive director of the research center, in a recent interview with China Daily.” (more)

5 Simple Ways To Encourage Brain Development In Your Little One

KQED News Mind/Shift – Elissa Nadworny

“Ron Ferguson, an economist at Harvard, has made a career out of studying the achievement gap — the well-documented learning gap that exists between kids of different races and socioeconomic statuses. But even he was surprised to discover that gap visible with “stark differences” by just age 2, meaning “kids aren’t halfway to kindergarten and they’re already well behind their peers.” And yet, there’s a whole body of research on how caregivers can encourage brain development before a child starts any formal learning. It’s another example, Ferguson says, of the disconnect between research and practice. So he set out to translate the research into five simple and free ways adults can help their little ones.” (more)

Why Your Brain Needs Novelty

Forbes – Tara Swart

“We’ve talked about neuroplasticity a few times here before. In a nutshell, it’s the brain’s ability to make new connections and habituate new behaviours and ways of thinking. It’s the process that underpins everything from learning a new language, or an instrument, to shifting deeply embedded underlying behaviours, from fierce and unpredictable outbursts of anger to a tendency to take a glass-half-empty view of life. Coaching, therapy, physical exercise and the development of a regular mindfulness meditation practice are all examples of things that can support neuroplasticity. Another factor is novelty, which is what I’d like to talk about in this post.” (more)

The STEM Zombie Apocalypse

Edutopia – Amy Schwartzbach-Kang and Edward Kang

“So many adults, including teachers, joke about not being able to do simple math or not being a “science person” that many students enter STEM classrooms with negative views. This creates a fixed mindset as students believe they need certain natural abilities to be successful in math and science. As educators, we need to create opportunities for students to overcome these deeply planted negative views.” (more)

Dyscalculia: Why maths doesn’t add up for some of us

The Irish Times – Carl O’Brien

“Do you find it impossible to calculate tips in restaurants? Does the prospect of calculating how many tiles you need for your kitchen fill your with dread? Do you struggle with calculating change? Have you always struggled to remember maths tables? Then, there’s a chance you suffer from dyscalculia, a specific learning disorder in maths.” (more)