Category Archives: L&B Blog

I’m Not Excited, YOU’RE Excited (OK: I’m Excited)

I’ve been going to Learning and the Brain conferences since 2008, so it takes a lot to for a roster of speakers to WOW me. But this week I’m officially WOWed. Next weekend’s conference looks remarkable. In some cases, I’m

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In the exaggerated stereotype of an obsessively traditional classroom, students sit perfectly silent and perfectly still. They listen, and watch, and do nothing else. Few classrooms truly function that way. But, how far should we go in the other direction?

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“Students Switch Their Screens Every 19 Seconds.” Sort Of…

I recently read an arresting claim: when students have web browsers open, they switch their screens — on average — every 19 seconds. Such data boggle the mind with horror. As teachers, we want our students to devote sustained thought

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EduTwitter Can Be Great. No, Really…

Twitter has a terrible reputation, and EduTwitter isn’t an exception. The misinformation. The name-calling. The “team” rivalries: all heat and little light. Did I mention the misinformation? You might wonder: why bother? Honestly, I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t. I

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How Can We Help Students Study Better?

This story might sound familiar: You attend a Learning and the Brain conference (like, say, our upcoming conference about Teaching During a Pandemic) and come away with FANTASTIC ideas. You go back to your classrooms — in person, online, asynchronous

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Does Online Learning Work? Framing the Debate to Come…

With news that several very effective vaccines will be increasingly available over the upcoming months, we teachers can now start thinking about “a return to normal”: that is — in person teaching as we (mostly) worked before February of 2020.

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Seriously: What Motivates Teachers to Be Funny?

To start 2021 in the right spirit, let’s think about humor in the classroom. It seems that, obviously, humor might be a good classroom strategy. When the lesson slows down, a joke or two might brighten the mood. Once we

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The Best Teaching Advice We’ve Got

You want to improve your teaching with psychology research? We’ve got good news, and bad news. And more good news. Good News: we have lots and LOTS of research. We can talk about attention, or working memory, or the spacing

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James Flynn Changed the Way We Think about Intelligence

In 1950, the average score on an IQ test was ~100. In 2020, the average score on an IQ test was ~100. Nothing, it seems, had changed. Those facts, however, disguise a surprising truth. IQ tests are based on scaled scores.

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December Book-a-Palooza

When I started in this field, back in 2008, teachers really didn’t have many helpful books to draw on. Books about teaching? Sure. Books about psychology and neuroscience research? Absolutely. Books bringing those topics together? Not so much… What a

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