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The Learning Success Blog

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

Posted by Peter Barnes on November 23, 2019 at 11:46 AM

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

What's Happening with Artificial Intelligence in Education & Learning?

Posted by Peter Barnes on November 10, 2019 at 5:33 PM

Peter Barnes

What's artificial intelligence got to do with learning and education? Actually, as it turns out quite a lot and in the future it may have an even bigger impact on how teachers teach and how students learn.

I was fortunate to attend the Australian Tutoring Association 2019 annual conference in Melbourne, where I heard educator Moya Gibb Smith give a presentation about the role of artificial intelligence (or AI as its generally known) in education and learning and how it's going to affect students, teachers, and tutors.

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Topics: Learning, Podcasts, Teaching, Successful Schools, Neurotech Programs

Tutor Anne-Marie O'Hagan: Importance of Family Involvement in Learning

Posted by Peter Barnes on October 30, 2019 at 12:31 PM

Peter Barnes

My brother, a primary school Principal, told me he often noticed the kids who did well at school had families who were very engaged in their education and in the school community. 

That's not to say children can't achieve at school if their families are not involved.

But it's an interesting observation.

So I thought I would explore the impact of family involvement on a special category of students - those struggling with their learning.  And I spoke with Anne-Marie O'Hagan, a former teacher and now a tutor working with struggling students for her perspective on this issue.

We recorded our conversation for an episode of The Learning Capacity Podcast.

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Topics: Learning, Teaching

How to Teach Kids about Money Management in a Practical Way

Posted by Jane Shearer on October 16, 2019 at 5:00 AM

Around a fifth of 15-year-olds in Australia do not have basic financial literacy, according to a new financial literacy assessment results report.

While in no way is debt solely dependent on poor money management, it can certainly be exacerbated by it and it is never too early to learn about the importance of sound financial strategy. Follow these tips and ensure the process is as fun as it is informative!

Money Talks

Money somehow seems to be a slightly taboo subject in many homes, with few parents discussing money matters with their children.

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Topics: Learning, Teaching

Easy Ways to Make Science Fun for Your Kids

Posted by Emily Preston on September 10, 2019 at 4:58 PM

While children can absorb new information at an amazing rate, they can lose it just as quickly. Did you know that learning loss is a big problem over the summer holidays?                                   

Consequently, six weeks of the new term are spent relearning old material. It is estimated that just two to three hours of active learning a week is enough to prevent learning loss over the summer – and a few hours of private tutoring is an ideal way to maintain your child’s learning (if this financially feasible, of course). If you’re worried about what other parents might think, don’t worry – 96% of parents say they wouldn’t judge others for using a tutor.

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Topics: Learning, Teaching

How to Learn From YouTube: For Your Studies, Hobbies and Work

Posted by Jane Shearer on September 8, 2019 at 4:16 PM

How to learn from YouTube

YouTube is the most popular online video sharing platform now in the world, there are millions of interesting videos on a wide range of different topics, many of which can actually be very educational.   Students on YouTube learning something new

There is something for everyone and there are many opportunities for learning. This article will look at how you can use YouTube for learning new things, as well as developing existing knowledge.

The YouTube Learning channel

Besides being able to search for topics of interest and choosing from the highest-ranking videos, there is actually a dedicated You Tube Learning channel full of videos on a wide range of different topics designed to help people learn new things, develop their knowledge in areas of interest, pick up new skills and maybe even find new hobbies. 

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Topics: eLearning, Learning

Can Meditation and Mindfulness Improve Your Learning?

Posted by Jane Shearer on August 10, 2019 at 2:12 PM

There has been a surge of interest in meditation in recent years due to mounting scientific evidence and research that links regular meditation with improved physical and mental health and well-being.   

Meditation has a great deal of brain boosting effect also, including improved memory, attention span and learning capabilities. This article will explore the ways in which meditation can improve learning.

Improved problem-solving abilities

Studies show that practicing meditation can help us become more creative and flexible in our thinking. This in turn improves our ability to problem-solve and conceive of novel or original ideas.

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Topics: Learning

Teaching STEAM, “soft” Skills, Minecraft and Lego Robots: John Burfoot

Posted by Peter Barnes on June 5, 2019 at 1:14 PM

Peter Barnes

What is STEM and why did it become STEAM?  

I asked John Burfoot, a STEAM teacher in a New South Wales Primary school to explain and we recorded our chat as an episode of The Learning Capacity Podcast.         

John also told me about how STEAM lessons enable students to learn valuable 'soft' life skills, as well as technical and technological skills.

His journey from a student who failed all his final high school exams to a degree qualified teacher is inspirational, and can serve as a reminder to students that their lives are not defined by what marks they achieve in school exams.

He worked as an electronics apprentice, a job in avionics, and making explosives for special effects in films before realising his passion is teaching.

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Topics: Learning, Podcasts, Careers, Teaching

Communicating from Complex to Simple: Dr Judy Ford

Posted by Peter Barnes on November 12, 2018 at 8:04 PM

Peter Barnes

How do you communicate complex information in a way that people unfamiliar with the subject's jargon can understand it? 

How do teams of experts from different disciplines communicate with each other? 

Dr Judy Ford, retired genetics expert and now a communications specialist, spoke to The Learning Capacity Podcast about ways to overcome these challenges.

She has been working with PhD students to help them navigate through their PhDs, and this includes how to communicate in writing and especially speaking.  

In the Podcast she talks about the Three Minute Thesis Competition in which students have only three minutes to communicate the ideas that are important in their PhDs.

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Topics: Writing, Learning, Podcasts

Mothers and Mothers-To-Be: Memory & Learning Reduced by too Much Sugar

Posted by Peter Barnes on April 21, 2018 at 3:27 PM

Peter Barnes

Too much sugar, especially from soft drinks, may damage your child’s learning ability and memory.

That’s the finding from a study of the diets of more than 1000 pregnant women and their children.  The study included assessments of the children’s cognitive skills at ages 3 and 7.

This research, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, suggests there may be learning benefits from reducing the sugar intake of women during pregnancy and limiting sugar consumption by their young children.  

Key findings include:

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Topics: Memory, Learning Capacity, Learning

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