Boosting Your Child's Brain Power: How Brain Research Applies to Early Learning
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Boosting Your Child's Brain Power: How Brain Research Applies to Early Learning

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Boosting Your Child's Brain Power: How Brain Research Applies to Early Learning Boosting Your Child's Brain Power: How Brain Research Applies to Early Learning Presentation Transcript

  • BOOST YOUR CHILD’S BRAIN POWER HOW BRAIN RESEARCH APPLIES TO EARLY LEARNING Tressa Parker The Bear Creek School
  • How is Your Child’s Brain Like a Garden?
  • Provide Rich Soil • Need a healthy foundation for learning and memory building • Cerebral Cortex—higher cognitive processing • Enriching environment = thicker cortex • Plasticity is the ability to rewire the brain with nourishment
  • Landscape Design: Improving Executive Function • Cognitive Flexibility • Inhibitory Control • Self-Control • Discipline/Perseverance • Working Memory • Problem Solving • Reasoning • Planning
  • EXCELLENCE IS AN ART WON BY TRAINING AND HABITUATION. WE DO NOT ACT RIGHTLY BECAUSE WE HAVE VIRTUE OR EXCELLENCE, BUT WE RATHER HAVE THOSE BECAUSE WE HAVE ACTED RIGHTLY. WE ARE WHAT WE REPEATEDLY DO. EXCELLENCE, THEN, IS NOT AN ACT BUT A HABIT. Aristotle, Ethica Nicomachea, 4th century BC
  • Fertilize • Capture attention • Children’s brains are engaged when they are actively involved in their learning • Three dimensional experiences • Music, rhythm, and rhyme • Learning activities • Dramatic play • Talking
  • Water Appropriately • Human brains learn best from familiar humans • Humans learn from Infant Directed Speech • Type of Speech Matters • High encouragement, low discouragement • Sophisticated words • Praise for effort • Humans learn from eye gaze • Humans learn through imitation • Humans learn from back and forth interaction • Humans learn by understanding emotion
  • Prune Carefully • Neurons that are not used are pruned away and die off • From age 4-10 the brain is very active, learning which connections to keep and which to discard • Learning a musical instrument or foreign language is much easier during this time
  • Encourage Branching • The brain can sprout new dendrites—grow new connections between neurons • Enrichment brings increased branching of dendrites • During the first 10 years there is much dendrite growth
  • Use the Right Tools • Create a nurturing and mentally stimulating environment • Provide a variety of opportunities • Exercise • Make sure your child gets plenty of sleep
  • Provide a Trellis • Activate prior knowledge • Use the five senses • Create emotional memory—Release of chemicals ―marks‖ the experience as meaningful • Help your child look for patterns • Read, read, read!
  • Establish Deep Roots • Long term memories—years to create • Attention • Review • Repetition provides fixative • Vision • Most powerful of the senses • 10% oral information remembered • 65% remembered if add picture • Visual sense—takes up half of brain resources
  • Metacognition: Thinking About Thinking • Organizing and retrieving information • Reflecting on learning • Understanding that learning changes the structure of brain • Effective use of praise
  • Effective Praise Fixed Mindset Students Growth Mindset Students Believe Intelligence is set Believe Brain is like a muscle Goal To look smart Goal To learn Mistakes Proof they have lost their giftedness Mistakes Problem to be solved Challenge Fearful: To try and fail = no longer smart Challenge Excited: See as opportunity to learn Difficult Task Give up Difficult Task Work harder Praised for Being intelligent Praised for Effort, process, persistence
  • Plant in Full Sun • Use specific praise –focus on qualities or achievements that your child can control • Talk to your child about how working harder makes his/her brain stronger • Show empathy • Emotional Regulation
  • The brain is wider than the sky. Emily Dickinson I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14
  • Resources • Brain Rules, John Medina. Seattle, WA: Pear Press, 2008. • Brain Rules for Baby, John Medina. Seattle, WA: Pear Press, 2010. • Education on the Edge of Possibility, Geoffrey and Renate Nummela Caine. • • • • • • Alexandria, VA:ASCD, 1997. Endangered Minds: Why Our Children Don’t Think, Jane M. Healy. Simon and Schuster, New York, 1990. Magic Trees of the Mind, Marian Diamond and Janet Hopson. New York: Dutton, 1998. Mind, Memory, and Learning, Pat Wolfe and M. Sorgen. Napa, CA.: Author, 1990. Teaching with the Brain in Mind in Mind, Eric Jensen; Alexandria, VA:ASCD, 1998. The Scientist in the Crib: Minds, Brains, and How Children Learn, Alison Gopnik, Ph.D., Andrew N. Meltzoff, Ph.D., and Patricia K. Kuhl, Ph. New York, William Morrow and Co., 1999 What's Going On in There? How the Brain and Mind Develop in the First Five Years of Life, Lise Eliot, Ph.D. New York, Bantam Books, 1999
  • Websites • www.brains.org • www.brainconnection.com • www.newhorizons.org • www.talaris.org • http://www.nymag.com/news/features/27840 • ilabs.washigton.edu • devcogneuro.com