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Newsletter: Navigating Games for Health and Education

Here you have the twice-a-month newslet­ter with our most pop­u­lar blog posts. Please brain fitness and health newsletterremem­ber that you can sub­scribe to receive this Newslet­ter by email, sim­ply by sub­mit­ting your email at the top of this page.

Quick, Are videogames good or bad?

That’s an impos­si­ble ques­tion. Good or bad for what? What  spe­cif­ic games are we talk­ing about? More impor­tant­ly, what are they sub­sti­tut­ing for, giv­en time is a lim­it­ed resource?  Con­trib­u­tor Jere­my Adam Smith, man­ag­ing direc­tor of Greater Good mag­a­zine, offers an in-depth review on the trade-offs videogames present in: Play­ing the Blame Game.

News Round-Up

Math Inno­va­tion in UK Schools: a recent (and unpub­lished) study seems to sup­port the poten­tial role for “Seri­ous Games” in edu­ca­tion. Learn­ing and Teach­ing Scot­land reports sig­nif­i­cant improve­ments in pupils’ con­cen­tra­tion and behav­ior, on top of math skills, after using Nin­ten­do Brain Train­ing game.

Alzheimer’s Aus­tralia endors­es Posit Sci­ence pro­grams: this announce­ment brings to sur­face a gen­uine pub­lic health dilem­ma — do you, as an asso­ci­a­tion, pro­mote pro­grams before they have been shown to have long-term effects on Alzheimer’s pro­gres­sion and preva­lence, or do you wait until you have “per­fect” research, and then per­haps lose 10–20-30 years or use­ful con­tri­bu­tion to thousands/ mil­lions of brain’s Cog­ni­tive Reserves? In our judg­ment, it may well be worth offer­ing options today, as long as they are accom­pa­nied by inde­pen­dent mea­sure­ment of the cog­ni­tive ben­e­fits.

More Sep­tem­ber News: Sep­tem­ber has brought a wealth of addi­tion­al world­wide media cov­er­age on cog­ni­tive health and brain fit­ness top­ics, includ­ing the role of schools in nur­tur­ing stu­den­t’s exec­u­tive func­tions, the impor­tance of base­line neu­ropsy­cho­log­i­cal test­ing in sports, the need for geron­tol­ogy as a dis­ci­pline to incor­po­rate brain research, how walk­ing can enhance brain func­tion, and the val­ue of brain fit­ness pro­grams for long-term care oper­a­tors.

Resources for Brain Fit­ness Nav­i­ga­tion

Well­ness Coach­ing for Brain Health and Fit­ness: will Well­ness Coach­es expand their role and become “Brain coach­es”? We have part­nered with Sut­ter Health Part­ners, the pio­neer­ing coach­ing group of a major health sys­tem, to train their well­ness coach­es on the impli­ca­tions of emerg­ing brain research for their work: focus on the 4 pil­lars of brain health ‑bal­anced nutri­tion, phys­i­cal exer­cise, stress man­age­ment and men­tal exer­cise.

Eval­u­a­tion Check­list for Orga­ni­za­tions: many health­care and edu­ca­tion orga­ni­za­tions are already mak­ing pur­chase deci­sions which involve eval­u­at­ing dif­fer­ent pro­grams that make “brain train­ing” or “cog­ni­tive health” claims. Here we present our 10-Ques­tion Sharp­Brains Check­list to help orga­ni­za­tions make informed deci­sions.

Eval­u­a­tion Check­list for Con­sumers: if you are an indi­vid­ual inter­est­ed in pro­grams for your­self and/ or a loved one, you can use this check­list. The start­ing point is to rec­og­nize that no pro­gram is a “mag­ic pill” or “gen­er­al solu­tion”, but a tool to be used in the appro­pri­ate con­text.

Learn­ing to Lead, and To Think

Round­table on Human Resources and Lead­er­ship: sev­er­al blog­gers dis­cuss lat­est news around lead­er­ship, social intel­li­gence, appli­ca­tions of brain research, and more.

Help­ing Young and Old Fish Learn How To Think: David Fos­ter Wal­lace gave a mas­ter­ful com­mence­ment speech on Life and Work to the 2005 grad­u­at­ing  class at Keny­on Col­lege.  Worth read­ing, with full atten­tion.

Brain Teasers

Sev­en Brain teasers for Job Inter­views: A recent CNN arti­cle explains why a grow­ing num­ber of tech­nol­o­gy and con­sult­ing com­pa­nies use brain teasers and log­ic puz­zles of a type called “guessti­ma­tions” dur­ing job inter­views. What are they look­ing for? Good exec­u­tive func­tions. Here you have a few typ­i­cal ques­tions.

Enjoy!

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About SharpBrains

As seen in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, BBC News, CNN, Reuters,  SharpBrains is an independent market research firm tracking how brain science can improve our health and our lives.

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