#Diffimooc Week 12: Brain-Based Learning

Essential question: What is brain-based learning and how can it inform problem based learning and differentiation? 

As stated by Jensen, brain-based education is best understood in three words: engagement, strategies and principles. In chapters three and eight of Teaching with the Brain in Mind discussed many of the ideas that we have already been reading about for the Diffimooc course. According to Jensen (2005), seven factors are critical to the learning process they are: engagement, repetition, input quantity, coherence, timing, error correction, and emotional states. The idea I kept coming back to while reading these chapters was the importance of getting to know our students and building relationships. In a classroom it’s important to remember that not every student learns the same, not every student is motivated by the same rewards, and students come to school with different prior knowledge. As educators if we want to assist our students in learning and understanding what is being taught we have to learn and understand the best way to teach our students. We have to be willing to try different strategies to motivate and engage our student’s learning.

In chapter three of Teaching with Poverty in Mind: What Being Poor Does to Kids’ Brains and What Schools Can Do About It the idea of fluid intelligence is addressed. As stated by Jensen (2005), “Fluid intelligence is a context-independent, highly transferable skill that will serve your students well in the real world.” It’s fascinating to know that a student is capable of making counting money and making change in the real world but that student may not transfer that skill to paper pencil question, which makes it important for educators to teach concepts/skills in multiple ways/contexts. Using PBL in the classroom can help students understand that skills are being taught for a reason and it’s not just important to learn material to pass a test, but to learn in order to use that information in the real world and apply it to other concepts in life. Key Largo School in Florida bases the way they teach and use technology on the book How People Learn: Brain, Mind, Experience, and School. Key Largo School uses different strategies and teaching methods to meet the needs of their students as seen in the video below.

References:

Edutopia. (n.d.) Building a Better School with Brain-Based Learning. [Video]. Retrieved April 10, 2015 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BL2RchtFpVs

Jensen, E. (2005). Teaching with the Brain in Mind (2nd Edition). Alexandria, VA, USA: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development (ASCD). Retrieved from http://www.ebrary.com

Jensen, E. (2009). Teaching with Poverty in Mind : What Being Poor Does to Kids’ Brains and What Schools Can Do About It. Alexandria, VA, USA: Association for Supervision & Curriculum Development (ASCD). Retrieved from http://www.ebrary.com

Jensen, E. (n.d.). What is Brain-Based Learning? Retrieved April 10, 2015 from https://feaweb.org/brain-based-learning-strategies