Thursday, November 19, 2009

Brain-Based Learning: Core Principle 1

Funderstanding lists the core principle of brain based learning. The first:

The brain is a parallel processor, meaning it can perform several activities at once, like tasting and smelling.

What is his brain processing? Seeing the lights and figuring out how to blow?

This principle seems like a no-brainer because this happens all the time. For instance, Ty is crawling around on the floor right now. He is learning that pressing your knees on carpet too hard hurts them and a new Elmo song on the stereo. He's also thinking about how much harder it is to push a car on carpet than on the hardwood. 

Teachers try to take advantage of this principle. When teaching literature, they teach comprehension, literary terms (analysis), and life lessons, or themes. Students read and take notes, at the same time. This is how I utilize this principle the most as a parent too, only with 2-year old ideas.

While reading a book, Ty and I discuss colors, the pictures, and numbers, if applicable. He's almost three and I have began incorporating feelings and predictions, like: What do you think will happen? Why do you think X did that? Was that nice? Was that fair? When he gets older, I imagine I can ask him to draw a journal about what happened in the book.

Another idea to embrace parallel processing is with play-doh. The feeling of the dough along with the vast colors engages the senses. The manipulation of the dough works his kinesthetic intelligence.

Every action can work this. The question is, how much do parents and teachers have to think about this? Is it enough to just know about it? Do we need to make a conscientious effort to address this in everyday learning?