Delightful Learning – it’s what your brain needs

Interesting article on brain based learning by a neurologist who is also an educator:

Classroom experiences that are free of intimidation may help information pass through the amygdalas affective filter. In addition, when classroom activities are pleasurable, the brain releases dopamine, a neurotransmitter that stimulates the memory centers and promotes the release of acetylcholinem, which increases focused attention.

The acronym RAD can remind educators of three important neuroscience concepts to consider when preparing lessons:

  • Novelty promotes information transmission through the Reticular activating system.
  • Stress-free classrooms propel data through the Amygdalas affective filter.
  • Pleasurable associations linked with learning are more likely to release more Dopamine.

There are no neuroimaging or brain wave analysis data that demonstrate a negative effect of joy and exuberance in classrooms, yet some schools have unspoken mandates against these valuable components of the classroom experience. Now that hard science proves the negative effects of stress and anxiety, teachers can more confidently promote enthusiasm in their classrooms.

Let’s hear it for classrooms full of novelty, excitement and delight then 🙂 She even has some quite useful suggestions for how to achieve them. Good stuff 🙂

All I have to do is remember that adults need this sort of consideration too!


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