Practical Suggestions from Teaching with the Brain in Mind by Eric Jensen
Motivation and Rewards
1. Part of the problem of low motivation is the way teachers treat students.
2. They do not need to be prodded, cajoled and motivated by bribes, management or threats.
Ask yourself, “In what ways is the brain naturally motivated from within? Rather than “How can I motivate them?”
3. Greater use of student choice, more quantity, variety and quality of feedback.
4. Students generate clear, well-defined goals and learn the skills of positive thinking.
5. Dean Wittrick, head of the Division of Educational Psychology at UCLA says that the brain is perfectly satisfied to pursue novelty and curiosity, embraces relevance and bathes in the feedback of successes.
6. He continues to suggest that extended applications of projects and problem solving where the process is more important than the answer is the real reward.
Emotions and Learning
1. Engage emotions appropriately as part of the learning every chance you get.
2. Show enthusiasm about your job. Build suspense, smile, tell a true emotional story, read a book or bring an animal. Let students know what excites you.
3. Use acknowledgments, parties, high-fives, food, music, and fun.
4. Set up a controversy which involves debate, dialogue or an argument.
5. Research indicates that when emotions are engaged right after a learning experience, the memories are much more likely to be recalled and accuracy goes up.
6. The use of journals, discussion, sharing, stories and reflection about people, things and issues engages students personally.
7. Good learning engages feelings. Emotions are an integral and invaluable part of every child’s education.
You are your children’s primary teachers. How are you engaging positive emotions with your kids to encourage learning at home?
©2014 Cynthia Klein, Bridges 2 Understanding, has been a Certified Parent Educator since 1994. She works with parents and organizations who want more cooperation, mutual respect and understanding between adults and children of all ages. Cynthia presents her expertise through speaking and private parenting coaching sessions. She is a member of the National Speakers Association and writes the Middle School Mom column for the Parenting on the Peninsula magazine. She works with parents of 4 – 25 year-old children. Contact Cynthia at bridges2understa.wpstagecoach.com, cynthia@bridges2understanding,com, or 650. 679.8138 to learn more about creating the relationship you want with your children.