Learning Smarter

What Do Emotions Have to Do with Learning?

What Do Emotions Have to Do with Learning?

| July 6, 2012 | 26 Comments

Thinkstock When parents and teachers consider how children learn, it’s usually the intellectual aspects of the activity they have in mind. Sidney D’Mello would like to change that. The University of Notre Dame psychologist has been studying the role of feelings in learning for close to a decade, and he has concluded that complex learning […]

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Can E-Readers Ease Reading for Dyslexics?

Can E-Readers Ease Reading for Dyslexics?

| June 29, 2012 | 20 Comments

Flickr: libookperson The causes of dyslexia—the disorder that makes reading excruciatingly difficult for about one in twenty school-aged children—have remained frustratingly elusive, as has anything resembling a cure. Training programs for dyslexics have proven effective at improving certain parts of the reading process, such as phonological awareness and auditory perception. Once these skills have been […]

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How Thinking in 3D Can Improve Math and Science Skills

How Thinking in 3D Can Improve Math and Science Skills

| June 22, 2012 | 17 Comments

All of us, children included, live in a three-dimensional universe—but too often parents and teachers act as if the physical world is as flat as a worksheet or the page of a book. We call kids’ attention to numbers and letters, but we neglect to remark upon the spatial properties of the objects around us: […]

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Surprising Tips That Help Kids Learn to Read

Surprising Tips That Help Kids Learn to Read

| June 7, 2012 | 15 Comments

Thinkstock Parents, do you know how to read? More precisely, do you know how to read to kids? Almost every adult who cares for young children knows that sharing books with them is an important way to promote their reading skills. But research shows that subtle features of the way adults act during story-time make […]

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Why Daydreaming Isn’t a Waste of Time

Why Daydreaming Isn’t a Waste of Time

| June 1, 2012 | 32 Comments

Parents and teachers expend a lot of energy getting kids to pay attention, concentrate, and focus on the task in front of them. What adults don’t do, according to University of Southern California education professor Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, is teach children the value of the more diffuse mental activity that characterizes our inner lives: daydreaming, […]

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How Do You Spark a Love of Math in Kids?

How Do You Spark a Love of Math in Kids?

| May 25, 2012 | 53 Comments

What is it about middle school and mathematics? Decades of educational research demonstrate that during the years between elementary school and high school, many students disengage from math and don’t regain their interest—to the detriment of their later schooling, and even their adult careers. A study that followed 273 students over the course of their […]

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What Schools Can Learn from Summer Camps

What Schools Can Learn from Summer Camps

| May 18, 2012 | 16 Comments

When the pressure is off grades and performance, kids focus on learning for the sake of learning, not to show off what they know, writes Annie Murphy Paul in this interesting post about a study examining the lasting effects of summer camp.

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What’s the Best Way to Encourage Kids?

What’s the Best Way to Encourage Kids?

| May 11, 2012 | 7 Comments

What we need is “a shift in emphasis from ‘raising aspirations’ to ‘keeping aspirations on track.’”

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Are We Wringing the Creativity Out of Kids?

Are We Wringing the Creativity Out of Kids?

| May 4, 2012 | 42 Comments

Do you think you’re creative?” Ask this question of a group of second-graders, and about 95 percent of them will answer “Yes.” Three years later, when the kids are in fifth grade, that proportion will drop to 50 percent—and by the time they’re seniors in high school, it’s down to 5 percent. Author Jonah Lehrer […]

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What’s the Secret Sauce to a Great Educational Game?

What’s the Secret Sauce to a Great Educational Game?

| April 26, 2012 | 15 Comments

Getty Chocolate-covered broccoli. That’s what designers of educational games call digital products that drape dull academic instruction in the superficially appealing disguise of a game. Instead of placing the fun of discovery and mastery at the heart of the game, these imposters use the trappings of games “as a sugar coating” for their otherwise unappetizing […]

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