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Rick Doughty

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    • #71051
      AvatarRick Doughty
      Member

      Another aspect to think about is teacher credibility from Hattie’s Visible Learning (Hattie, 2015). He states that teacher credibility is made up of trust, competence, dynamism, and immediacy. Immediacy refers to breaking down barriers between the teacher and the students. In your case, do your students know that, like them, you have struggled and at times have failed. That you make mistakes, but learn from them and keep trying.

      I know in my own experience that the teachers who opened up about their mistakes and failures and how they worked with them seemed closer and more real and had a greater impact on me. Teachers who appeared to get everything right and did not have struggles of any kind seemed more distant to me.

      Another extension of this is to then give examples of other well know people who struggled in school or failed at other aspects of life but kept trying and in the end succeeded. Whether it is Michael Jordon being cut from his high school basketball team, or Albert Einstein’s struggles in school, there are a lot of examples of struggles turned to success. Your students should learn about some of these stories especially with people they look up to and have no idea they struggled as well.


    • #51152
      AvatarRick Doughty
      Member

      In Iain McGilChrist’s book, The Master and his Emissary, he has a couple pages discussing functional brain areas involved with particular math skills. Although it is not long (pgs 64-66), it does contain numerous citations to research that could provide extremely helpful material to support inquiry along this line.


    • #42928
      AvatarRick Doughty
      Member

      One of my most influential classes was improvisation. Improvisation focuses on releasing your creativity in the moment. One interesting exercise we would do when creativity had ebbed was to point at objects and yell out the wrong name. So members of the group would begin to point at a desk and yell squirrel or point at the window and yell accordion. This proved to be a very effective exercise in getting the creativity flowing again.

      Years later when I read The Master and His Emissary, I understood the following which made sense of this exercise. In the book, Iain McGilchrist cites research showing that individuals with divided brains in which the corpus callosum has been severed are less creative. He then builds the case that the left hemisphere specializes in having a database of categories in which things properly fit. The right hemisphere in contrast specializes in the ability to recognize new things, new relationships and abstraction.

      It seems likely then when I call something different than the category my left hemisphere knows, I am requiring both hemispheres to work together in allowing this new name for a known object which already has a category. While my improvisation instructor did not know brain development and Iain McGilchrist does not bring up this specific example, it makes sense that this exercise could have a very sound functional basis in the promotion of creativity.


    • #13515
      AvatarRick Doughty
      Member

      During the past 25 years I have been an administrator of both biomedical research institutes (particularly neuroscience) and of colleges. This background has required me to understand the research the neuroscientists are involved in, how I can best support their research, and how I can support professors and their programs as they instruct students in the classroom. The Brain Based Learning Certification has been a critical part of my professional career. It has provided an in-depth level of understanding that would not have been possible otherwise.

      My positions have provided opportunity to learn directly from neuroscientists, to work and volunteer in educational programs from Head Start through college, and to work directly with parents in learning how an understanding of brain development can make our job as parents easier. Along with my career, I partner every year with my wife, who is an elementary school teacher, in volunteering in her classroom, engaging in a continuing discussion of how brain based learning principles can help her students learn, and keeping in touch with current approaches to improve education in Oregon.

      I consider the Brain Based Learning Certification absolutely necessary in making me an effective administrator and helping me keep a clear vision that all of my administrative effort is about student learning and support. I consider this forum an integral part of my administrative work to support research and education.


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