How the Brain Affects Learning

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A sad phenomenon is occurring every day in American schools - our children are dying a painful and slow death as they sit chained to their seats for six or seven hours.
Why are these bright, beautiful children in such pain? There are numerous reasons, but the primary reason can be blamed on the brain.
With current technology, we are able to scan the brain and learn how it works.
Yet, even with this modern knowledge, our schools are lagging behind.
Walk into almost any school in America and you will find a teacher standing in front of a classroom lecturing to a group of kids, just as it was done forty or fifty years ago.
Yet, these teachers and educators have failed to examine the brain, how it works, and how it is changing.
The brain is split into two hemispheres.
The left and the right.
The corpus callosum is a bundle of nerve fibers that splits these two hemispheres in half.
Each half of the brain is responsible for certain jobs and to work effectively, the messages must travel back and forth across the corpus callosum, accessing both the left and right hemispheres of the brain.
The left hemisphere of the brain is the logical side.
It is responsible for conscious control, words, phonics, numbers, reasoning, math, lists, categories, analysis, linear thought, auditory function, and bit by bit learning.
If you take a closer look, you will notice that almost all of these skills are what a student in a modern American classroom is judged by.
Think about it.
The teacher stands in front of the class (auditory) lecturing the kids while they sit quietly without moving.
They are expected to read, write, and do math in a step-by-step fashion.
They are given assignments and are expected to know how to break them down and complete them on their own.
(conscious control) Enter the right hemisphere.
The right brain is responsible for movement, rhythm, music, shapes, colors, pictures, emotions, daydreaming, expressions, synthesis, and problem solving.
The right brain dominant students are smothered in the left brain dominant classroom simply because the tools are not given to them for success.
These are our active, creative children - our dreamers, artists, and musicians.
These are the children who can think and feel, who are perceptive and sensitive.
Yet, these are the children who are also failing to make the grade.
There is a way to teach children to access both hemispheres of their brains.
It really isn't a difficult thing to do.
We know more about the brain now than we ever have, yet few educators are using the existing brain research to help children succeed.
These are our choices: continue to let the right brain dominant children fail, change the school system so that it is balanced between right and left hemisphere skills, or teach the children to access both hemispheres of their brains.
Through physical exercises that are geared toward crossing the midline of the body and with eye placement that matches sensory centers in the brain, the student can learn to do this.
It takes time, and it takes knowledge, but it can be done.
Isn't it time we give the right brain dominant kids a chance at success?
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