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Wednesday, November 26, 2014

The Myth of Multitasking And What It Means For Learning

Forbes – Nick Morrison

“Supported by research into how the brain functions, Dr Deak argues that the brain is only able to focus deeply on one task at a time…“In the long-term it changes the brain from being able to focus deeply on a single task well, to being what we call a rifle, that wants to jump around a lot.”…Children and adolescents, with their rapidly developing and elastic brains, are particularly vulnerable to such changes…”(more)

6 Brain-Boosting Foods to Feed Your Children

Wall St. Cheat Sheet – Kirsten Klahn

“The foods your children eat have a huge impact on their growth. It isn’t just their physical growth, either. By having your kids chow down on the right foods, you’re helping their brains to develop properly. In fact, certain superfoods even have the power to keep your little ones focused and sharp throughout the day…Here is a list of six brain-boosting foods your children should be eating.”(more)

Monday, November 24, 2014

NEW LANGUAGES RE-WIRE BRAINS OF ALL AGES

Futurity – Victoria Indivero

“Li and colleagues studied 39 native English speakers’ brains over a six-week period as half of the participants learned Chinese vocabulary. Of the subjects learning the new vocabulary, those who were more successful in attaining the information showed a more connected brain network than both the less successful participants and those who did not learn the new vocabulary.”(more)

Soda Or Energy Drinks: Which Is Worse For Kids’ Health?

Medical Daily – Samantha Olson

“Between the bright colors, cartoons, commercials, and accessibility, energy drinks and sodas are a health hazard for children. Energy drinks are popular among teenagers and college kids, and if they have a little sibling watching them guzzle down these sugary, caffeinated drinks, they may want one, too. Consuming too much caffeine can cause adverse health effects, however, and a child’s little body is much more susceptible to the dangers of energy concoctions.”(more)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Common toxins make big difference in brain development

The Star – Bruce Lanphear Erica Phipps Eric Crighton Barbara McElgunn

“A conversation has started in Canada that could mean a brighter future for our children. And not just by investing in education. This new conversation is about focusing our collective attention on a serious threat to tiny developing brains: toxic exposures.”(more)

Saturday, November 22, 2014

Stanford researchers bridge education and neuroscience to strengthen the growing field of educational neuroscience

Health Canal – Amy Adams

“As methods of imaging the brain improve, neuroscientists and educators can now identify changes in children’s brains as they learn, and start to develop ways of personalizing instruction for kids who are falling behind.”(more)

‘Lost’ first languages leave permanent mark on the brain, new study reveals

The Guardian – Holly Young

““Lost” first languages leave a permanent mark on the brain, a report this week has found. The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (PNAS) in the US, challenges the existing understanding that exposure to a language in the first year of a child’s life can be “erased” if he or she is moved to a different linguistic environment.”(more)

Thursday, November 20, 2014

Learning a language is never a waste of time

The Telegraph – Nicholas Ostler

“Why do we choose to learn foreign languages, after all? There are some half a dozen basic reasons…First of all is practical usefulness, to reach across a language barrier…being bilingual improves your general intelligence, seeming to make the mind more flexible…those who promote language learning in Britain usually focus on what it might do for careers.”(more)

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

An Infant’s Brain Maps Language From Birth, Study Says

Time – Melissa Locker

“…the language that an infant hears starting at birth creates neural patterns that the unconscious brain retains years later, even if the child completely stops using the language…What the study does suggest though is the importance of this early phase of language exposure…children start out as global citizens who turn their heads equally to all sounds and only later start to edit and become experts in the languages that they’re regularly exposed to.” (more)

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Early Childhood Education That Focuses On Executive Function Improves Later School Performance

Medical Daily – Anthony Rivas

“Science is beginning to show more than ever that a child’s performance in school is largely dependent by how much they know prior to beginning kindergarten. According to a report from the Economic Policy Institute, children from lower socioeconomic backgrounds score 60 percent lower in cognitive tests than kids with richer parents. When it comes to math scores, poor black kids score an average of 21 percent lower than whites, while Hispanics score 19 percent lower. Pre-K and kindergarten classes are meant to balance these disparities, but curriculums and resources often vary between poorer and richer schools.” (more)