5 Brain-friendly ways to improve learning - March 2014

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Training & Documentation Community of Practice

Training & DocumentationCommunity of PracticeMeeting: March 20, 2013Leader: Steve ToftConference Line: 877-675-4345Participant Code: 162 431 8808

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#1

Date or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes onlyCourse or module title

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Lets take a short pop quiz about some common things most of us have heard about the brain and learning.

Hint: Of the three statements, only 1 is true.Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only2

VisualAuditoryKinestheticFALSEPerception==Learning./1

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Statement: People learn better when the instructional format, such as visual or kinesthetic, matches their natural learning style.

FALSE:

Although everyone has their preferred way of taking in information, this idea is wrong because equates perception with learning. But the input of the senses has no meaning in itself. For understanding and learning, a further step, a step beyond perception is necessary. The learner needs to interpret the input of his senses and give this input a meaning. Only by this second step, through endeavoring to find a meaning, understanding and learning of the formula is achieved. So, while individual learners show preferences for the mode in which they receive information, they don't learn any better than with other modes.

Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only3

FALSEWe use 100%of our brain.2

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Statement: We use only 10 percent of our brain capacity.

FALSE: The The Centre for Educational Research and Innovation (CERI), international body, does extensive research work which covers learning at all ages, from birth to old age. It has called this one of the most pervasive and persistent neuromyths today.

Except in those with severe cognitive disabilitysuch as someone in a vegetative statepeople use all of the brain constantly. Even while asleep, a person does not use "only 10 percent of the brain."Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only4

TRUEExercise Improvesbrain function.3

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Statement: Exercise makes you smarter

TRUE: Researchers studied two elderly populations that had led different lifestyles, one sedentary and one active. Cognitive scores were profoundly influenced. Exercise positively affected executive function, spatial tasks, reaction times and quantitative skills. So researchers asked: If the sedentary populations become active, will their cognitive scores go up? Yes, it turns out, if the exercise is aerobic. In four months, executive functions vastly improve; longer, and memory scores improve as well. Exercise improves cognition for two reasons: 1. Exercise increases oxygen flow into the brain, which reduces brain-bound free radicals. One of the most interesting findings of the past few decades is that an increase in oxygen is always accompanied by an uptick in mental sharpness.

2. Exercise acts directly on the molecular machinery of the brain itself. It increases neurons creation, survival, and resistance to damage and stress.

Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only5

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#This graph from the website BrainRules.net shows the results of research on exercise and brain function with younger people. Same result as with the research on the elderly in the previous slide.Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only6

What is Learning?

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Its your turn to weigh in on the definition of learning. What is it? There are lots of definitions from different perspectives, such as neurological/biological, educational, psychological. Ill share one of my favorite definitions in a moment, but what are your ideas?

Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only7

Learning is moving data out of short-term memory and into long-term memory.

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#I like this definition, partly because its so pithy, but also because it gives us a good working definition that we can use when evaluating if learning has actually happened.

Transition: Learning is a complex activity, and there are lots of variables that work together to determine if learning is effective or not. On the slides that follow, Im going to share with you 5 brain-friendly ways to improve learning.

As we look at them, keep a couple of things in mind:There are other effective-learning principles, also based on decades of both neuroscience and educational practice, that are also important in making sure real learning happens. But since we have time today for only a few, Ive selected 5 that are particularly relevant.

Also, the learning factors Im about to show you apply not only to our work as trainers, those of us who design, develop and deliver it. They also apply to your own learning, whether on the job or anywhere else in life. If nothing else, when you encounter either good or bad training, youll not only recoginize it for what it is, but youll be able to identify why its good or bad. Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only8

5 brain-friendly ways to improve learningLikenessEmotionActionReceptionNoteworthiness

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#This is todays list of brain-friendly ways to improve learning. To help remember them, Ive used one useful memory tool (or mnemonic devices for the techy word lovers among you) to help embed these concepts in your brain, where hopefully theyll stick. Youll notice that the initial letters of the five words spell the word L.E.A.R.N.

So, were going to look at the roles of Likeness, Emotion, Action, Reception, and Noteworthiness. In some cases, better words exist, but these are close enough to spell the word were talking about today.Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only9

Do youKnow whatthis is?Likeness

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Lets do a little visual experiment. Take a look at this image for a moment. Now, can anyone tell me what this is? What does it look like? (If you know, please wait until the next slide.)Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only10

Whataboutthe same object viewed from farther away?

Copyright 2014 Hewlett-Packard Development Company, L.P. The information contained herein is subject to change without notice. HP Confidential For training purposes only.#Some of you may have already recognized the image. But for those of you who dont, look at the inset image, and tell think about whether youve seen photos of this before.

Its a land feature on Mars taken by the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter by its HiRISE camera. To many people, the fuzzier, more distant image in the lower right is familiar as the "Face on Mars". It does, in fact, look like a fact. Ever since people have been gazing at the planets with telescopes and seeing Mars magnified, they have been intrigued by this image.

However, of course, its not a face, and up close you can see that; it looks like some kind of mound, but far away and with less resolution, we see it as a face. This same phenomenon happens whenever someone sees a face in a tortilla or land stain on the sidewalk.

Whats going on? Whats happening is that our brains are going into pattern-matching mode, trying to see if this shape resembles anything weve seen before.

Designed to perceive and generate patterns, the brain resists having meaningless patterns imposed on it. By meaningless we mean isolated pieces of information that are unrelated to what makes sense to a particular student. Renate Nummela Caine and Geoffrey Cain, Understanding a Brain-Based Approach to Learning and Teaching, 1990

This is critical training strategy.

Course or module titleDate or rev. #HP Confidential For training purposes only11

What do you think the LIKENESS principle means for how we