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Make Educational Neuroscience Work in Your School - 7 Tips

Posted by Peter Barnes on November 25, 2021 at 2:25 PM

Peter Barnes

Educators and schools around the world are increasingly using the knowledge, techniques, and programs developed from a new understanding of how our brains learn. They are applying neuroscience in their classrooms.

Why?

As an educator, you might be asking yourself why would I do this in my school?

Here are some reasons why. Educational neuroscience can:

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Topics: Brain Science, School, Learning Capacity, For Principals

Macquarie Uni’s MUSEC Briefing # 28: Academic vs Real World Evidence

Posted by David Stanley on July 7, 2021 at 9:50 AM

David Stanley

If you are considering a product to help your brain or improve academic performance, what evidence would you rely on?

Many people don't want to read research and thus seek a trusted advisor. Sadly, they are often unaware of potential conflicts of interest.

A case in point is the Macquarie University's Special Education Centre (MUSEC) brief discussed herein, where Macquarie University crudely used one meta-analysis to support their commercial initiative.

Can you rely on MUSEC for an independent, impartial and unbiased opinion?

What about the practical, real world gold standard evidence: 20+ years of product validation by millions of users around the world:

In 1996 four world leaders in neuroscience, after 25 years of ground-breaking research, formed a company (Scientific Learning Corporation). Their core product - Fast ForWord® translates neuroplasticity-based training research into educational programs to develop learning capacity and reading skills. It has been continually revised and enhanced ever since.

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Topics: Fast ForWord, For Principals

Building Student Learning Capacity - The Missing Link in Education

Posted by Peter Barnes on August 6, 2020 at 10:43 AM

Peter Barnes

Have you ever wondered what it would be like if all the students you teach would pay attention and more easily “get” what you are teaching them?

That’s impossible, you might say. Perhaps it is, but it’s not impossible to improve the attention and ability to learn for every one of your students. Listen to this podcast “Student Learning Capacity – The Missing Link in Education” to find out how.

Welcome to the concept of being able to change the learning capacity of students

How often do some of your students:

  • Find it hard to pay attention to your teaching?

  • Struggle to remember what you taught?

  • Seem to be unable to keep up with the pace of your instructions or the classroom discussions?

How much more could you enjoy teaching if these were less of an issue?

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Topics: Learning Capacity, For Principals

Educational Neuroscience:  A Wave of Change for Teachers & Students

Posted by Peter Barnes on March 2, 2020 at 1:25 PM

Peter Barnes

Is educational neuroscience a legitimate area of knowledge which can help teachers and students, or is it mostly "neurobabble" as some articles in the Melbourne Age and in The Conversation have recently suggested?

The authors of both these articles correctly point out that there is an increasing amount of brain-based language in education discussions. And also that much of the 'brain' and 'neuro' language being used has little scientific basis.

But that does not mean all discussion of the role of neuroscience in education should be dismissed as useless "neurobabble". In fact educational neuroscience is now a recognised scientific discipline which is being studied in some of the world's leading universities including Stanford, Columbia and Vanderbilt in the USA and Cambridge University in the UK.

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Topics: Brain Science, Learning Capacity, Educational Neuroscience, For Principals

Fast ForWord123 rated highly by techlearning.com

Posted by Peter Barnes on June 29, 2017 at 4:31 PM

Peter Barnes

The neuroscience-based language & learning improvement program, Fast ForWord123 (including the Fast ForWord cognitive, language and reading development modules plus Reading Assistant, the online reading coach) was recently rated by techlearning.com.

Here is a summary of the techlearning.com rating:

OVERALL RATING:

Unique features and technology, sophisticated reporting, real-time feedback, interactive resources, and a broad range of reading passages in an intuitive and easy-to-use program all help teachers understand when and where students are struggling and help students gain the skills they need to be successful readers.

Suitability for Use in a School Environment: 

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Topics: Fast ForWord, For Principals

250 Research Studies Published on Fast ForWord & Reading Assistant

Posted by Peter Barnes on February 28, 2017 at 3:41 PM

Peter Barnes

How do you usually make decisions when you are thinking about an important purchase such as a car or a large household item like a refrigerator or washing machine?

Do you base your decisions on:

  1. How you feel (“I really like it”)?
  2. What others say about it?
  3. Comparisons of facts and data (fuel consumption, energy efficiency, reports by independent consumer organisations)?
  4. A combination of all of these.

Decisions about educational software

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Topics: English Language Learners, Fast ForWord, Educational Neuroscience, For Principals

Double " teaching as usual" reading gain - 146 NSW primary students

Posted by Peter Barnes on December 5, 2016 at 1:51 PM

Peter Barnes

Here is how a primary school achieved double the reading gain one would normally expect.

Picture this:  Following a half day professional development session, "Glasses for the Ears" where the teachers discovered how their students could become better learners by using neuroscience, students of all abilities from Grades 2 to 6 were enrolled in the Fast ForWord neuroscience-based program.

The teachers who volunteered to implement the program received more detailed ongoing training and support.

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

What is Neuroplasticity & How Does It Impact Education?  (Infographic)

Posted by Peter Barnes on September 5, 2016 at 3:05 PM

Peter Barnes

“Everything having to do with human training and education has to be re-examined in light of neuroplasticity". (Norman Doidge, author of "The Brain That Changes Itself”).

What is neuroplasticity? It is the understanding that experiences are able to change our brains, and that our brain’s structure and capacity are not fixed. The eminent neuroscientist, Dr Michael Merzenich, widely known as “the father of neuroplasticity”, recently shared the $1million Kavli Prize for his contribution to this understanding.

Neuroplasticity offers the prospect of new ways to improve learning and education, physical rehabilitation, mental illnesses and addiction.

An excellent infographic explaining neuroplasticity has been produced by Alta Mira, a San Francisco rehabilitation and recovery centre.  

 The infographic includes this comment about education:

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Topics: Educational Neuroscience, For Principals

Fast ForWord Neuroscience Programs a Success at Covenant College

Posted by Peter Barnes on July 27, 2016 at 10:59 AM

Peter Barnes

“I’ve too many good results here with a range of children to not give all the kids an opportunity to do it”.

That's how Bruce Horman, Head of Junior School at Covenant College explained why he decided to have all children in Grade Three participate in the neuroscience-based Fast ForWord program in 2015.

Covenant College is a K -12 school with 540 students in Geelong, Victoria.

For the previous three years Covenant College had focussed the program on students from various grades who were presenting with a range of learning difficulties. They also included some students who were achieving in the mid range of their cohort, but had potential to do better.

Bruce commented, “I've seen that bright kids also benefit from Fast ForWord. It's not just for those kids who are really struggling”.

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

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