IAE Blog

Information Age Education (IAE) is an Oregon not-for-profit corporation founded by David Moursund in August 2007. The IAE Blog was started in August 2010.

A Dialogue on Brain Science in Education

My colleague Bob Albrecht says that he appreciates my recent free book on Brain Science for Educators and Parents (Moursund, August, 2015). However, he notes the book would be strengthened by the addition of practical, down-to-earth brain science content that teachers can teach to students and/or use at various grade levels and in various disciplines.

He is certainly correct. I don’t know what typical first graders know about their brains. Nor do I know what typical first grade teachers know about the brains of first graders and what they want first graders to know about their own brains. Furthermore, there appears to be little published literature on effective uses of brain science in the teaching and learning of the various disciplines taught at PreK-12 grade levels. For example, do teachers of social studies need and use the same brain science knowledge as teachers of mathematics or music?

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Brain Science

Please answer to yourself the following two questions:

1. Are you satisfied with your current knowledge of the capabilities, limitations, and functioning of your brain?

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School Homework: Think Outside the Box

The nature and extent of homework assigned to students has long been a controversial issue. My 9/18/2014 Google search of the expression school homework produced about 145 million hits. What are the goals of such homework assignments? Are the goals being accomplished? What does the research literature tell us?

I view every person both as a lifelong leaner and as a lifelong teacher. In every interaction I have with another person, I both learn from that person and help that person learn from me. When I think about goals of education, I think both about the “traditional” content that is taught and also about the goal of helping every student to become better at being both a lifelong learner and a lifelong teacher.

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Video Games, Problem Solving, and James Gee

Ever since I was a young child I have enjoyed playing games. As a child I enjoyed playing board games, card games, and a variety of sports. As an adult I continued my interest in board games and card games. Eventually computer-based games came along, and they have consumed many hundreds of hours (would I admit to thousands of hours?) of my leisure time. I have even managed to tie some of what I learned by off-computer and on-computer game playing into my professional work. (See Suggested Readings)

There is a steadily growing body of research literature on the use of games in education. The following quote is from an article about James Gee, one of the researchers. It features an eight-minute video of Gee speaking to teachers. Gee presents an excellent introduction to some of the values of video games in education and he stresses several points:

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Artificial Intelligence and Artificial Muscle

Artificial Intelligence (also known as machine intelligence) is a somewhat misleading term.

Consider humanity's long endeavor to create for aids to their physical capabilities. We routinely use all kinds of machines such as airplane, backhoe, bicycle, car, forklift, spaceship, train, truck, and so on. We do not call these tools “artificial muscle.”

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