Several people have responded to the article “Growing Your Child’s Brain.” We include here one response from a former student of Bob Valiant, Kristine Ellingson, who has had an extremely successful career in jewelry design and management, She now lives in the Yucatan where she and her husband operate a new Bed and Breakfast as well as other business interests. We remember her as a bright, hardworking student who always looked at things from a variety of angles and wouldn’t stand for “pat” answers. The second response is from a long-time teacher in the Kennewick, Washington School District, Dennis Sandmeier, who is a friend and colleague of Dr. Valiant. He is the kind of teacher we seek out for advice when tough decisions need to be made. As you will see, he thinks deeply about what he does professionally.
Posts Tagged ‘Brain’
A growing body of research is helping us understand not only how the brain works, but what we can do to enhance learning. Parents and teachers now have available much of the information they need to help guide the development of their children. In this article we will review some of the areas cognitive researchers in many fields agree are important findings regarding the brain and learning. More information is provided elsewhere on this web site for those interested in pursuing the topic. Our procedure will be to provide a brief narrative description of each finding followed by some suggested strategies for the adult caregiver including learning activities directed specifically to the finding.
Recent research on the human brain is providing new understanding of how we learn, information which is helping us to redefine intelligence. This new information, which is now being translated into classroom applications with the goal of increasing learning for all students, has broad implications for the design of learning environments since it is the facility which must support the educational program. As we explore facility designs for the 21st Century and beyond, we need to keep abreast of developments in the field of brain research, being mindful that their influence on the teaching/learning relationship will forever change the way we build and renovate school facilities.
The debates rage on.
Nature versus Nurture. Phonics versus Whole Language. Reductionist versus Constructivist. Traditional versus Progressive. Once the conversation begins lines are quickly drawn and, as educators, we either withdraw or begin to espouse our current position. We have heard it all before. Parents and others in the public take sides as well, taking their cue from their own experience or from someone they believe and respect. Meanwhile, politicians use whichever position they believe will further their own agenda, whether in the best interest of children or not. After all, who are they to believe?