After some months without writing… I decided to talk about the BRAIN. In my opinion, not many people know how it works and how can we control it. As a teacher I think it is important to appreciate its possibilities. In this post you will find some information scientific information and some activities you can use in class. Hope you enjoy it!
- BRAINS AND CONCENTRATION
The first thing that we should take into account is that human brains aren’t designed to be concentrated a lot of time. That’s why it is difficult to make our children pay attention and be concentrated during a whole hour.
So that, it is a mistake to force our students to concentrate during a long range of time, because it is going to be a failure. Some months ago I wrote a post about brain breakes that can be useful to solve concentration at class. Here you can find it.
Here I give you some tips to improve their attention:
- Give them some minutes a day to breath deeply and reflect on their brains.
- Make them speak. Prepare activities where children need to speak. It is proved that in speaking activities the brain demands more concentration.
2. THEY ARE A SOCIAL ORGANS
As you probably know, brains require stimulation and connection to work and survive. It means that a brain cannot work without a connection with other brains. Optimism, stimulation, motivation and encouragement are crucial. We need POSITIVE BRAINS:
- Get to know your students and their lives
- Actively listen to your students
- Ask them for feedback
- Reflect on your own experience
- Make them feel important
We need Happy Brains!
3. MIND AND BODY ARE CONNECTED
Physical activity is essential to have good minds. Exercise has been shown to stimulate the birth of new neurons in the hippocampus and to pump more oxygen through the brain, stimulating capillary growth and frontal-lobe plasticity.
If we take this into account, we can create learning activities that require movement. some methodologies as TPR or WBT are perfect !
- Learn doing gestures
- Make them move : Running dictations, corners, mimics…
- Make them build objects and create stuff.
- Make them change their seats
- There are many positions to learn: not always sitting on a chair.
Some researches show that when you can picture up a concept means that you have acquired it. For this reason, I always make my students complete MIND MAPS, and simple drawings to visualize and organize all the information in their brains. As we said before, our brains are complex organs that need connections to keep information, that’s why organization is crucial.
There is a general misconception that our beliefs are the cause of our actions. Often it is the other way around.Teachers need to place students in situations where they can persuade themselves that they were intrinsically motivated to behave a certain way or to carry out certain actions.
Some examples that can help you:
- THE TWO LINES: Before the class, the teacher give two options to the students: The Ready to Learn line and the going to misbehave line. Give your students some minutes to think and choose one line.
- QUESTIONS WITH SCALE: Give them the option to scale their opinions ” In a scale from one to ten how likely are you to do the activities today?
- GOAL SHEETS: Give them the possibility to think about their own goals and the class goals.
- PUBLIC GOALS: Sometimes, deciding group goals is a good activity to feel part of a comunity. One idea is to create a GOAL corner in the class, where children can write their own goals and all together decide the group goals.
That’s all for today!
PLEASE LET ME KNOW WHAT’S YOUR OPINION!
HAVE A NICE WEEK!