Everyone agrees that what we do in schools should be based on what we know about how the brain learns. Until recently, however, we have had few clues to unlock the secrets of the brain. Now, research from the neurosciences has greatly improved our understanding of the learning process, and we have a much more solid foundation on which to base educational decisions.
In this completely revised and updated second edition, Patricia Wolfe clarifies how we can effectively match teaching practice with brain functioning. Encompassing the most recent and relevant research and knowledge, this edition also includes three entirely new chapters that examine brain development from birth through adolescence and identify the impact of exercise, sleep, nutrition, and technology on the brain. .
Brain Matters begins with a “mini-textbook” on brain anatomy and physiology, bringing the biology of the brain into context with teaching and learning. Wolfe describes how the brain encodes, manipulates, and stores information, and she proposes implications that recent research has for practice—why meaning is essential for attention, how emotion can enhance or impede learning, and how different types of rehearsal are necessary for different types of learning..
Finally, Wolfe introduces and examines practical classroom applications and brain-compatible teaching strategies that take advantage of simulations, projects, problem-based learning, graphic organizers, music, active engagement, and mnemonics. These strategies are accompanied by actual classroom scenarios—spanning the content areas and grade levels from lower elementary to high school—that help teachers connect theory with practice.