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Teachers don’t understand the depth of dyslexia

Medical X-Press – Cathryn Knight

“Dyslexia is a common learning difficulty that most of us know for causing problems with writing, reading and spelling. But it is more than this, and can affect people in many different ways. It is generally accepted that underlying neurological aspects, such as slight differences in brain structure, can change the way that dyslexic people process information, and this affects the behaviour they might display. In addition to literacy difficulties, people with dyslexia may also have trouble expressing themselves, even though they are very knowledgeable about a topic.” (more)

Musical learning and the brain

The Concordian – Elise Martin

“Lucía Vaquero and Virginia Penhune, researchers in Concordia’s Department of Psychology, recently published a study in NeuroImage that reveals the link between the structure and size of white matter in the brain and the learning of melody and rhythm. “We wanted to explore music learning in non-musicians, because there had been previous investigations linking structural connectivity to music learning and music practice, but [only] in musicians compared to non-musicians,” said Vaquero.” (more)

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)

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)