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Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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10 Brain Tips To Teach and Learn — Ideas for New Year Resolutions

My inter­est in the brain stems from want­i­ng to bet­ter under­stand both how to make school more palat­able for stu­dents, and pro­fes­sion­al devel­op­ment more mean­ing­ful for fac­ul­ty. To that end, I began my Neu­rons Fir­ing blog in April, 2007, have been doing a lot of read­ing, and been attend­ing work­shops and con­fer­ences, includ­ing Learn­ing & the Brain.

If you agree that our brains are designed for learn­ing, then as edu­ca­tors it is incum­bent upon us to be look­ing for ways to max­i­mize the learn­ing process for each of our stu­dents, as well as for our­selves. Some of what fol­lows is sim­ply com­mon sense, but I’ve learned that all of it has a sci­en­tif­ic basis in our brains. Read the rest of this entry »

10 Brain Tips To Teach and Learn

My nat­ur­al rhythms are in cycle with the school cal­en­dar. Jan­u­ary 1st takes a back seat to my new year, which gets ush­ered in with the month of Sep­tem­ber when there is crisp­ness in the air that grad­u­al­ly shakes off the slow­er, more relaxed pace of summer.Conveniently, my career in teach­ing mesh­es with my nat­ur­al cycli­cal year. And as this year draws to a close, I am re-ener­gized by the pace of sum­mer, know­ing that any­thing may pop in to my mind as I engage in activ­i­ties not direct­ly relat­ed to school. But before that hap­pens, I’d like to reflect on this past year, in par­tic­u­lar as it was my first year of blog­ging about the brain.

My inter­est in the brain stems from want­i­ng to bet­ter under­stand both how to make school more palat­able for stu­dents, and pro­fes­sion­al devel­op­ment more mean­ing­ful for fac­ul­ty. To that end, I began my Neu­rons Fir­ing blog in April, 2007, have been doing a lot of read­ing, and been attend­ing work­shops and con­fer­ences, includ­ing Learn­ing & the Brain.

If you agree that our brains are designed for learn­ing, then Read the rest of this entry »

Rethinking the Brain Fitness Business

Great arti­cle on the grow­ing brain fit­ness field. Rethink­ing the Brain Busi­ness: Why a men­tal-fit­ness pro­gram may be the start of some­thing big. Some quotes:

- “But Merzenich has lofti­er ambi­tions. He envi­sions his com­pa­ny as part of a new indus­try that will become a “mir­ror” of the drug indus­try. He wants to go far beyond sim­ply sharp­en­ing mem­o­ry and cog­ni­tive abil­i­ty to tack­le dis­eases as well. Instead of med­ica­tions, he sees a busi­ness root­ed in neu­ro­science that will use non­in­va­sive com­put­er exer­cis­es to rewire the brain, grad­u­al­ly train­ing it back to men­tal health.”

- For now, Merzenich believes the emerg­ing field of “brain health” is clut­tered with bad sci­ence. He sin­gled out Nin­ten­do’s brain games as an exam­ple of a prod­uct that has no sci­ence to back up its claims. But he does­n’t expect that to last.

- “This field is undis­ci­plined now and full of trash,” he says. “But it will mature and ulti­mate­ly the snake oil will be cleaned up. It will grow like the fit­ness indus­try from almost nowhere. And it will become a part of every­day life.”

For help on how to eval­u­ate the grow­ing num­ber of pro­grams, check out our Brain Fit­ness Pro­gram eval­u­a­tion check­list.

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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