Learning never exhausts the mind.— Leonardo da Vinci
A better understanding of how the brain’s works, capabilities, and boundaries allows us to constantly improve how we teach others and how productive one can be. From my research on the science of learning, here are 8 of the most significant breakthroughs that have been made recently. These would provide valuable insights on how to make the best use of your brain without misusing energy.
8 Key Learning Sciences Discoveries
The brain is a mysterious organ, humans have for centuries had numerous misconceptions about how it works, expands, and influences our ability to learn. We have a long way to go in unravelling the mysteries the brain has to offer, scientists have made significant breakthroughs that go a long way in clarifying how the brain performs and how we use it to categorize, recall, and assimilate new information.
Here are Eight of the biggest and most important of these breakthroughs in the science of learning.
- More information doesn’t mean more learning.
The brain is equipped to grab a bulky load of information and sensory input, it does reach a point when the brain gets overwhelmed, scientists call it cognitive overload.
- The brain an extremely energetic organ.
The brain’s wiring changes at various ages and grows new neurons. It adapts to new situations — the rate at which it takes place does slow with age. This phenomenon is termed neuroplasticity, and it has key implications in our comprehension of how the brain works and how we can use that comprehension to improve learning results.
- Emotion influences the ability to learn.
Learning situations where students feel stressed, shamed, or just uncomfortable actually makes it more problematic for them to learn, increasing pessimistic emotions and igniting a vicious cycle that leave some children reluctant to learn.
- Mistakes are an essential part of learning.
Failure is a dirty word in most folks, but when it comes to the science of learning, research shows that failure is necessary. A recent study found that students behaved better in school and felt more assertive when they were told upfront that failure is a normal part of learning, bolstering an increasing body of research that implies the same conclusion.
- The brain needs novelty.
Boredom does kill you, and your ability to pay attention to learn. Repetition is important in learning, but what the brain really desires is novelty. Researchers have found that novelty triggers the dopamine system in the brain to be enhanced, sending the chemicals across the brain.
- OurBrains operate on the “use it or lose it” rule.
There’s a reason that you forget your skills in a language that you don’t speak or use a lot. Even that algebra you used in school that you hardly utilize on a regular basis. Information in the brain that isn’t used is often vanishes, as neural pathways weaken over time.
- Learning is social.
Some people prefer learn better in closed off centers like the library, while others need interactions from others to maximize their learning. Research has found that from infancy on, people learn better through social cues such as recalling and emulating the actions or words of another person.
- Learning is best when innate abilities are capitalized on.
Besides being able to see and hear patterns, the human mind some innate abilities (the ease of learning a language, as an example) when used the right way makes learning any concept, even one that is theoretical, much simpler. Merging these inborn abilities with structured practice, repetition, and training helps make new concepts and concepts “stick” and logical.
Adetola Salau; Global Educator / International Speaker / Author/ Social Entrepreneur/ Innovative Thinker/Future Readiness Advocate/ STEM Certified Trainer
She is an Advocate of STEM Education and is Passionate about Education reform. She is an innovative thinker and strives for our society & continent as a whole to reclaim it’s greatness.
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