Saturday, 17 November 2012

Brain Processing - the limiting factor?

Glynda Lee Hoffman reiterates the importance of "Brain Based Learning" in her TEDxChico talk published today. In particular, she talks about the interventions that her group has done to improve the visual, auditory and motor neural processing of students who struggle in the classroom.
Her point is that these students do not SEE or HEAR or MOVE appropriately because the neural pathways to do these things are not developed or are developed ineffectively.
In this recording she recounts the work of her institution, the interventions made and the advances reported. I was intrigued since some of the visual processing improvement work was done on rectangular arrays - pinboard type exercises - each time increasing the complexity. Is it possible that abstract and out of context tasks can bring about this improvement? Are poorly performing students able to motivate themselves to do these tasks?
I would like to see the research on this and the results - I was able to find the Hoffman Institute that she refers to but no information about the research. Does anybody know about where this work is to be found?

1 comment:

alittlelight said...

I was quite taken with the presentings having stuggled all year with two particular students in my class that seemed to be struggling not so much with content, but with capacity. They were working at their fullest capacity, but that seemed fixed (and low), like trying to pour a bucket of water into a tea cup. I tested them using the Bender visual test and sure enough, their processing skills were the lowest in the group. I also found a few surprises with other students. I am interested to find an oral processing test next as I think both of them are underdeveloped in that area too.

As far as resiurces, has got some good visual processing activities and links. is also good. I started collecting and building my own based on what Glynda had has been fun. ALSO has some good ones.?..if schools could get subscriptions that would be's fun addictive and good for your brain.

From what I've observed so far variety of activities and increasing in complexity is the way to achieve both engagement and growth...I will give it a few more weeks and then post test the students.