Wednesday, July 24, 2019

The Fantastic Elastic Brain Stretch It, Shape It by JoAnn Deak

Last week I attended a two day workshop on Whole Brain Teaching.  One of my favorite parts was learning about the brain and how all the different parts come together and a chant with motions to help students understand.  I fear that over time my students are sitting way too much and need to move and groove.  I'm so lucky my friend asked if I knew about The Fantastic Elastic Brain Stretch It, Shape It by JoAnn Deak because I didn't.

I've reread the book several times and I'm wondering how did I miss this one!  The book begins by defining what the brain is and what it does; highlighting the different parts.  The Amygdala is fascinating.  It's in the center of our brain and controls our emotions while the Prefrontal Cortex helps us make plans and decisions.  The book shares information about practicing and stretching our brains.    I often tell students we learn the most when we make mistakes and this book confirms my thinking.  There's a page discussing the different areas of the brain that are needed to learn how to play the piano and could launch a great discussion about their own learning interests and how they are using different parts of their brain.

I'm so happy to have found this book for the first month of school.  It's a great introduction for Whole Brain Teaching and of course, growth mindset.

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