Brain Based Education - 021 797 8010 - Sunlands Primary School

11 Newent Street,
021 797 8010
Mon - Thurs: 07:45 - 14:45
Fri: 07:45 - 12:30
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Brain Based Education

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Brain-Based Education is the purposeful engagement of certain teaching strategies in the classroom and is based on the structure and function of the brain. As long as the brain is not prohibited from fulfilling its normal processes, learning will occur. These strategies are based on principles derived from solid scientific research.

People often say that everyone can learn. Yet the reality is that everyone does learn. Every person is born with a brain that functions as an immensely powerful processor. Traditional schooling, however, often inhibits learning by discouraging, ignoring, or punishing the brain’s natural learning processes.

A brain compatible teacher teaches with the brain in mind. This educator understands the principles and uses strategies in a purposeful way to enable learners to learn better, remember better and apply what they have learned better.

The core principles of brain-based learning state that:

The brain is a parallel processor, meaning it can perform several activities at once, like tasting and smelling.
Learning engages the whole physiology.
The search for meaning is innate.
The search for meaning comes through patterning.
Emotions are critical to patterning.
The brain processes wholes and parts simultaneously.
Learning involves both focused attention and peripheral perception.
Learning involves both conscious and unconscious processes.
We have two types of memory: spatial and rote.
We understand best when facts are embedded in natural, spatial memory.
Learning is enhanced by challenge and inhibited by threat.
Each brain is unique.

Examples of Brain-Based Learning Applications:
Evidence suggests that stress is a significant factor in creativity, memory, behavior and learning. Teachers who purposely manage stress factors (purposefully decrease or increase stress) in class are likely to experience a positive classroom environment. There are many ways to decrease stress in the classroom, such as playing baroque music at certain times, integrating stretching exercises or movement, making use of Brain Gym, incorporating recess, teaching coping skills, and utilizing physical education.

Evidence suggests that moderate glucose levels enhance learner’s memory-making. Since glucose can be enhanced through food, stimulating emotions and physical activity, teachers can manage their instructional strategies so that students can better maintain moderate glucose levels. This strategy can help students form stronger memories.

Hydrating the brain is important. To keep learners brain hydrated they are allowed and encouraged to have bottles filled with water in the classroom. This enables them to take frequent sips to allow hydration of the brain.

Since 2006 Sunlands Primary School has become a Brain-based school. Staff incorporate several teaching methods and brain smart activities to wake up the brain in order to optimize the learning process of each learner. Movement is included in lessons as it is critical for cognition. It unifies brain levels and provides learners with an opportunity to utilize both sides of the brain which results in whole-brain functioning, as the passing of information between both hemispheres maximizes the storage thereof.

During the morning routine learners have a short break in class where they are allowed to have a healthy snack which feeds the brain, optimize brain activities, concentration and attention span. Learners are allowed to have a water bottle with pure water (not flavoured water) in class to take water sips regularly during teaching time as it keeps the brain hydrated.

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