Introduction to Brain-Compatible Learning
By: Eric Jensen
The book begins with an overview of the movement towards Brain-Compatible teaching with a history of ideas relating to education and the study of the brain. Jensen provides a quick overview of the structure and functioning of the brain, providing recent research that shatters much of our strong-held beliefs about the brain. Case-in-point: You actually grow brain cells throughout your life. Therefore factors such as nutrition, exercise, and environmental stimuli can actually help you grow more brain cells!
The vast majority of the book is divided into seven principles that serve as the foundation for Brain-Compatible teaching. It is here that the book truly becomes an effective tool.
The Principle of Memory Malleability
The author spends about one-and-a-half pages describing the background of the principle and offers research to back his statements. Basically memories change and are imperfect. Then:
Implications for Educators
The author takes the research and applies it to the classroom. Including movement in the classroom to increase the number of sensory recalls that a student will receive over a topic. Include repetition, but vary it. Set up procedures for classroom management. All very practical advice for the teacher who aspires to create the most effective learning environment possible.
The author ends his book with a discussion of broad concepts that can be taken away from the research. He even includes a brief case study.
Overall I think the book is a great start for any teacher. The only drawback is that Jensen discusses a number of complex functions, but never bothers to over a visual diagram, which would be helpful. But if you’re looking for a brain-compatible upgrade, start here!Share