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The Learning Success Blog

It Hurts to be Excluded - Educating with Neuroscience 2017 Conferences

Posted by Peter Barnes on April 12, 2017 at 10:02 AM

Peter Barnes

Do you know what it feels like to be discriminated against, to be excluded?

I hope you don’t, it’s not nice.

It happened to me recently.  A travel insurance company told me they would not renew the annual travel insurance policy I’d had for years.

The reason?  I’ve had a birthday.  I’m a year older, and they don’t insure people my age on that policy.

Every day in our schools some kids feel discriminated against, feel excluded.  Because they are different in some way from the group. They may be physically different. They might have learning challenges and can’t keep up with the rest of the class.

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Topics: Brain Science, Learning, Educational Neuroscience, Conferences

Education – Australia’s Leaning Tower of PISA?

Posted by Peter Barnes on December 13, 2016 at 2:02 PM

Peter Barnes

The Leaning Tower of Pisa in Italy got its famous lean because the architects and engineers messed up back in the 14th century.

They didn’t build the foundations correctly.

In the 600 years since it was built the tower has turned into a tourist attraction. That’s lucky, because a tower with a lean isn’t much good for anything else.

From recent comments in the media about the latest PISA (Program for International Student Assessment) results an impartial observer could be forgiven for thinking that Australian education may be going the way of the Leaning Tower of Pisa -  interesting, but possibly not really doing the job it was built for.

The latest PISA results have shown that Australian students are continuing to fall behind other countries in maths and literacy. In the last 10 years Australia dropped from 6th to 12th in reading and from 9th to 20th in maths on this global comparison.

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Topics: Fast ForWord, Learning Capacity, Learning, For Principals

How Poverty & Disadvantage Impacts Learning for 730,000 Children

Posted by Peter Barnes on October 18, 2016 at 4:43 PM

Peter Barnes

More than 730,000 children in Australia are living below the poverty line.

These disadvantaged children are at risk of having their learning compromised.

The Poverty in Australia 2016 Report, released last week, found the number of children living in poverty is increasing.

The report was written by the Australian Council of Social Service (ACOSS) in collaboration with the Social Policy Research Centre at the University of New South Wales.

Find out how poverty and disadvantage can disrupt learning – see this infographic (courtesy of We Are Teachers and Scientific Learning Corporation).

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Topics: Latest Research, Learning Difficulties, Learning, For Principals

Can Practice Improve Attention? A New Method to Train Attention Skills

Posted by Peter Barnes on September 19, 2016 at 4:43 PM

Peter Barnes

Dr David Rabiner, Research Professor at Duke University, USA is a world recognised expert on attention and ADHD.

He has developed a new approach to attention training called Nervanix Insight.  It uses neurofeedback (also known as EEG Biofeedback) to monitor and train attention skills.

According to scientific research, neurofeedback is the nonmedical approach for developing attention skills that has the strongest evidence for its effectiveness.

Traditional neurofeedback approaches generally use game-like activities that don’t have much resemblance to academic tasks that students need to focus on.

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Topics: Attention, Learning Enhancement, Brain Science, Learning, Nervanix Attention Technology

Thinking Routines in the Classroom. Not Just an Activity? Simon Brooks

Posted by Colin Klupiec on July 21, 2016 at 7:55 PM

Colin Klupiec

I have been having an ongoing 8 episode discussion with educational consultant, Simon Brooks about Cultures of Thinking. This is an educational framework that emerged from the work of Ron Ritchhart and the Project Zero team at Harvard University.

In each of the discussions we delve into the 8 cultural forces that, according to Ron Ritchhart, we must master in order to truly transform our schools.

In this episode, part 6, I discuss the cultural force of 'routines' with Simon, who spent years implementing cultures of thinking into his classrooms. I asked Simon if routines are more than just another classroom activity. 

This is Part 6 of the 8 part series with Simon Brooks about implementing cultures of thinking in our schools.

Listen to the podcast.

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Topics: Learning, Podcasts, Cultures of Thinking

Cultures of Thinking: Simon Brooks on Using the Force of Opportunities

Posted by Colin Klupiec on July 3, 2016 at 4:47 PM

Colin Klupiec

Cultures of Thinking is an educational framework that emerged from the work of Ron Ritchhart and the Project Zero team at Harvard University.

On the Learning Capacity Podcast, I have been speaking with educational consultant, Simon Brooks about each of the 8 cultural forces in the framework. In this discussion we look at what it means to create ‘opportunities’ for learning in our classrooms.

This is Part 5 of the 8 part series with Simon Brooks about implementing cultures of thinking in our schools.

Listen to the podcast.

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Topics: School, Learning, Podcasts, Teaching, Cultures of Thinking

Cultures of Thinking: Simon Brooks on using the Force of Time

Posted by Colin Klupiec on June 19, 2016 at 2:55 PM

Colin Klupiec

Ticking away, the moments that make up a dull day. Is that your school day?

Cultures of Thinking is an educational framework that emerged from the work of Ron Ritchhart and the Project Zero team at Harvard University.

In a series of interviews with education consultant Simon Brooks I have been delving into each of the 8 cultural forces that, according to Ron Ritchhart, we must master in order to truly transform our schools.  Simon has spent years implementing cultures of thinking into his classrooms, and now helps teachers introduce the framework in their schools. In this episode of The Learning Capacity Podcast we discuss the cultural force of time.

This is Part 3 of the 8 part series with Simon Brooks about implementing cultures of thinking in our schools. 

Listen to the podcast.

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Topics: School, Learning, Podcasts, Teaching, Cultures of Thinking

Cultures of Thinking: Simon Brooks on Using the Force of Language

Posted by Colin Klupiec on June 16, 2016 at 5:08 PM

Colin Klupiec

The use of language in our schools: Do we take it for granted? 

Cultures of Thinking is an educational framework that emerged from the work of Ron Ritchhart and the Project Zero team at Harvard University.

This article belongs to an 8 part series, based on discussions on The Learning Capacity Podcast where I delve into each of the 8 cultural forces that, according to Ron Ritchhart, we must master in order to truly transform our schools.

My guest in the series is Simon Brooks, who spent years implementing cultures of thinking into his classrooms, and now helps teachers introduce the framework in their schools.

In this series, we take a closer look at practical ways to implement the theory behind it all. This is part 2, where we discuss the cultural force of language.

This is Part 2 of the 8 part series with Simon Brooks about implementing cultures of thinking in our schools. 

Listen to the podcast.


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Topics: School, Learning, Podcasts, Teaching, Cultures of Thinking

Cultures of Thinking: Simon Brooks on Using the Force of ‘Expectations’

Posted by Colin Klupiec on June 13, 2016 at 11:16 AM

Colin Klupiec


Do we have expectations ‘of’ our students, or ‘for’ our students?

My guest in the series is Simon Brooks, who spent years implementing cultures of thinking into his classrooms. He now helps teachers introduce the framework in their schools.

In this series, we’ll take a closer look at practical ways to implement the theory behind it all.

This is part 1 of the 8 part series with Simon Brooks about implementing cultures of thinking in our schools.

In part 1 we discuss the cultural force of expectations.

Listen to the podcast.

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Topics: School, Learning, Podcasts, Teaching, Cultures of Thinking

10 Ways to Develop Your Child's Brain for Reading Success

Posted by Peter Barnes on June 1, 2016 at 5:18 PM

Peter Barnes

Many children struggle with reading, but there are ways parents can help prevent reading difficulties.

Reading researcher, Dr Jennifer Buckingham estimates that as many as 1 million children in Australia are at risk of reading failure.

We know from scientific research that the ability to read is one of the most complex skills we can learn.

According to reading research organisations in Australia and overseas, including The Centre for Independent Studies in Australia, the National Reading Panel (USA), and the USA National Institute for Literacy, there are some critical skills for learning to read.  

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Topics: Attention, Memory, Reading, Learning

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