Sunday, 31 August 2014

Big heart, little minds ~

Little minds is what it is all about, the filling and moulding of open vessels. 

I have heard a lot lately about the importance of brain compatible learning and more recently the need for 'brain breaks' ... there is an abundance of new research and ideas on fostering the brain compatible classroom. A brain compatible classroom is one where educators realise (as if we didn't already!) that the brain IS the no. 1. organ for learning and we should not allow it to shut down. (Hasn't that been the goal of teachers for centuries!) Truly, it really does provide an interesting topic of discussion (or debate) in the school staffroom. 

So, the goal of every good teacher is now ensuring that the cerebral cortex (of every child in the classroom ... all 28 students)where the vital thinking and learning occurs, does not shut down in your classroom - Help, they are yawning already and its only nine o'clock! My whole day is spent making sure that brains are switched on and ready for learning!

Seriously though, I love this research and that it is a hot topic of educational forums. As we continue to develop brain based education and brain based best practices, we endeavour to continue to pave the way for sound pedagogical practice and do the best for our students ... and this is the very basis of good education and the heart of every great teacher. There is real merit to the science behind brain compatible learning and ensuring that our little peoples brains are fully engaged and utilising all of their potential and capacity. The principles are sound and based on a thoughtful framework for thinking introspectively about teaching methodology. 


The brain should be in relaxed alertness, so an environment of low stress but high challenge.
The brain should be immersed in carefully orchestrated complex and authentic experiences.
The brain should be actively processing and making meaning of these experiences.

And so, in my pursuit of educational soundness, I am now researching the nine elements of brain compatible science that influence learning to ensure that the little people in my care are extracting meaningful patterns (in sufficient time frames) and adequately processing incoming data (because to delay is to lose it - you snooze, you lose!) and are in a classroom devoid of distraction, clutter and over stimulation .... oh dear, better get to it then!

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