Sharp Brains: Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

Neuroplasticity, Brain Fitness and Cognitive Health News

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Report calls for wide classroom-based adoption of ten brain fitness programs designed to improve foundational executive functions

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Nation­al Non­prof­it Releas­es Report Call­ing for Brain Fit­ness Inter­ven­tions in All U.S. Schools (press release):

Brain­Fu­tures released a report today that makes a clear case for inte­grat­ing proven brain fit­ness pro­grams into all U.S. class­rooms. Over a decade of research has shown that evi­dence-based pro­grams can improve stu­dents’ exec­u­tive func­tion skills and proso­cial behav­iors, which are more accu­rate pre­dic­tors of aca­d­e­m­ic readi­ness and life suc­cess than IQ or any oth­er per­for­mance mark­ers. Read the rest of this entry »

Let’s discuss how to Outsmart Smart Technology to Reclaim our Health and Focus

I’m excit­ed to share that the upcom­ing 2019 Sharp­Brains Vir­tu­al Sum­mit will fea­ture, on May 8th, a fas­ci­nat­ing pre­sen­ta­tion and dis­cus­sion with Dr. Mar­garet Mor­ris, who spent 13 years as a researcher at Intel and recent­ly wrote a very time­ly book — Left to Our Own Devices: Out­smart­ing Smart Tech­nol­o­gy to Reclaim Our Rela­tion­ships, Health, and Focus (MIT Press, 2018).

Please learn more about the fan­tas­tic Sum­mit Agen­da and con­sid­er join­ing us!

To bet­ter under­stand Dr. Mor­ris’ work and insights you can read this great book review over at Psy­chi­atric Times:

Mor­ris is a skill­ful sto­ry­teller and takes that chal­lenge to task. Across eight easy-to-read chap­ters, she illus­trates how peo­ple, most like­ly younger users, “hack” tech­nolo­gies to fos­ter con­nec­tion, mind­ful­ness, and well-being. The chap­ters are cen­tered around a col­lec­tion of per­son­al nar­ra­tives from peo­ple who per­son­al­ized their dig­i­tal devices and expe­ri­ence pos­i­tive results. Mor­ris records these sto­ries with a gen­tle, engag­ing, and upbeat tone that requires no for­mal back­ground in either men­tal health or tech­nol­o­gy … This book is a good read for today’s dig­i­tal health ini­tia­tives and for clin­i­cians hop­ing to keep up to date in cur­rent trends in men­tal health tech­nol­o­gy. It reminds us that putting a device in a patient’s hands will often lead to out­comes that we could nev­er have imag­ined. It also pokes holes in the once reign­ing view that robot­ics and chat­bots are dehu­man­iz­ing and anti­so­cial. If any­thing, the nar­ra­tives sug­gest that tech­nol­o­gy can help patients mon­i­tor their emo­tion­al states and improve shar­ing and con­nec­tions. The book under­scores how use­ful it is to study how patients use apps in real-world set­tings and to learn from their lived expe­ri­ences.

 

Your take?

To all very sharp, very smart brains: Happy Holidays, and Let’s all have a great 2016!

3_BRAINS

Is There a Formula for Smart Thinking?

One day, one of my kids was star­ing at a sim­ple cir­cuit dia­gram. It showed a bat­tery con­nect­ed to a resis­tor and a light bulb. He was doing a home­work prob­lem. The par­tic­u­lar ques­tion that had him stumped asked what would hap­pen to the cur­rent in the cir­cuit if the resis­tor was replaced with anoth­er that had more resis­tance. He hadn’t been in class that day and had nev­er stud­ied elec­tric­i­ty, and so he stared at the dia­gram for a few min­utes with­out com­pre­hen­sion.

My son had reached what psy­chol­o­gists call an impasse, which is real­ly just a fan­cy way of say­ing that he was stuck. Read the rest of this entry »

Yes, It is Smart to Learn New Tricks

Good arti­cle in the Wash­ing­ton Post today: 

Is It Real­ly Smart to Teach Old Brains New Tricks?

The reporter presents a good overview of what is happening, but framed around a high­ly arti­fi­cial choice for con­sumers: either you a) do phys­i­cal exer­cise, or b) take part in social inter­ac­tions, or c) engage in men­tal exer­cise.

What about switch­ing off those TVs and hav­ing time for all a, b, c, and more? Research does not sup­port a “gen­er­al solu­tion” to cog­ni­tive health but a mul­ti-pronged one, fea­tur­ing a good nutri­tion, stress man­age­ment, and both phys­i­cal and men­tal exer­cise. Each indi­vid­ual presents dif­fer­ent con­texts and pri­or­i­ties: for exam­ple, Read the rest of this entry »

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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