Want Children to “Pay Attention”? Make Their Brains Curious!

Posted on November 11, 2011

A few thousand years ago, link in 360 B.C., more about Plato advised against force-feeding of facts to students. “Elements of instruction…should be presented to the mind in childhood; not, however, under any notion of forcing education. A freeman ought not to be a slave in the acquisition of knowledge of any kind. Bodily exercise, when compulsory, does no harm to the body; but knowledge which is acquired under compulsion obtains no hold on the mind.”

Children Are Paying Attention, Just Not to the Boring Things in Class

Getting into the brain is like getting into an exclusive nightclub where only the glamorous few are selected. Once inside, another gatekeeper, stress, determines what makes the cut to enter the upper VIP lounge in the prefrontal cortex – that valuable 13% of cerebral architecture where our highest cognition and emotional reflection takes place.

Force Feeding Won’t Work Even on a Hungry Brain

The RAS is a virtual editor that grants attention and admission to a small fraction of all the available sights, sounds, and tactile sensations available at any moment. This survival-directed filter is critical for animals in the wild, but as it has not changed significantly as man evolved, and the implications for the classroom or with children in the home are significant.

Author: Judy Willis, Psychology Today Online

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