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WHAT WORKS IN EDUCATION The George Lucas Educational Foundation

How the Brain Learns Best: Strategies to Make Learning Stick -- Keep the Discussion Going

Thank you to all who joined us during our lively webinar about how the brain learns, part of our special report on multiple intelligences. We hope you walked away from it with ideas and inspiration to bring the very best to your classroom, your school district, or your community.

As is often the case, the number of questions from our community far exceeded our allotted time, but we've put together the following resources to help you get the most out of our Edutopia webinars:

About the Panelists

Grace Rubenstein

Grace Rubenstein is a staff writer and multimedia producer with Edutopia magazine and Edutopia.org. Prior to joining The George Lucas Educational Foundation in 2005, she was an education reporter at the Lawrence, Massachusetts, Eagle-Tribune and a Boston Globe correspondent. She has won awards from the New England Press Association and the New England Associated Press News Executives Association.

Judy Willis

Dr. Judy Willis, a board-certified neurologist and a middle school teacher in Santa Barbara, California, combined her training in neuroscience and neuroimaging with her teacher-education training and years of classroom experience and became an authority in learning-centered brain research and classroom strategies derived from this research. Visit RADTeach.com for a list of books and articles she has written.

Useful Web Sites for Parents and Educators

Neuroscience for Kids

This site is for all students and teachers who would like to learn about the nervous system. Discover the exciting world of the brain, the spinal cord, neurons, and the senses. Use the experiments, activities, and games to help you learn about the nervous system. For example, on Sounds of Neuroscience, watch and hear feedback from the electricity of information transmission through brain cells. Check out news briefs, an e-newsletter, and a television program, as well; there are also plenty of links to other Web sites for you to explore.

The Hawn Foundation

I am on the Hawn Foundation's board of directors, and I consulted with the organization on the curriculum for its classroom and home program, designed to enhance students' self-awareness, focused attention, problem-solving abilities, self-regulation, stress reduction, and pro-social behaviors.

GreatSchools: Your Child with Learning Difficulties

This section of GreatSchools is for parents and teachers about practical strategies for strategies for academic and social success and to inform about children's learning difficulties, including those that can be diagnosed -- learning disabilities, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and autism and Asperger's syndrome -- and other difficulties without a diagnosis. The home page links to resources by grade; these materials cover topics such as Media and Your Child.

Discovery Channel

The Discovery Channel's Web site, which demonstrates the learning strategies I discussed in the webinar, has games, videos, text, and photos featuring science organized by topic and age. For example, Volcano Explorer takes you inside a volcano and is interactive so you control the viscosity and gas settings and see the effect on the shape and explosiveness of the volcano.

Unit Conversion

In the simple but effective game on this site, the visitor fills in missing numbers in metric unit-conversion equations; correct answers place a stick figure into a seat of a Ferris wheel, and the wheel moves smoothly and music plays when all the seats are filled.

Comments (27)Sign in or register to postSubscribe to comments via RSS

Kathryn's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Jean has commented that the webinar has been recorded. I had to disappointedly leave Judy's lecture half way through and am hoping that besides the powerpoint she has provided (which is awesome!), the rest of the audio-lecture is available. Where might I find it?
Thank you very much!

Rob Bentzley's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Dr. Willis,
I had a chance to glance through the "older version". It goes into a lot more depth and gives some very practical suggestions that I plan on using. I hope you are called back to present again!

Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I agree about the value of visualization and art in learning, and that has been supported by neuroscience and neuroimaging. You can read more about this in two of my books and one by L. Baines listed below. Keep up the important work!
Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed.
How Your Child Learns Best, by Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed

Research-Based Strategies to Ignite Student Learning: Insights from a Neurologist and Classroom Teacher by Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed

Teacher's Guide to Multisensory Learning
by Lawrence Baines


Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Abby's suggestions for using my recommendation of "Advertising" to engage students RAS and attention is great. I'd love to hear from more of you who use any of the strategies I suggested in the webinar or in the articles and books found on my webpage. My next book will be a compilation of what others do with these strategies and how students respond - so teachers can help teachers. I will contact you with the description I write or quote from you about your RAD, brain-research strategy based lesson and the comments I plan to include in the book, before it is published....and send you several copies after publication.

I do many professional development workshops for parents and educators. My most recent book is about Middle School students, called, Inspiring Middle School Minds: Gifted, Creative, and Talented, available from Great Potentials Press and on amazon.com

You'll also find articles for all grade levels for educators and parents on my website where you'll also see the list of my previous and upcoming national and international in-service workshops and professional development presentations. You can contact me to get more information about my presentations through the website http://www.RADTeach.com or by email at jwillisneuro@aol.com

Keep Igniting those Brains!
Dr. Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed.

Judy Willis, M.D., M.Ed's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

Making Learning Stick and specific information about which you are interested regarding my pointers and tips on how you might procede in finding ways of utilizing my ideas and research to help both your students and faculty in "seeing the light?" are available with free links to my articles and free chapters from my books. These are found on my website www.RADTeach.com
You are certainly a great resource for your school's faculty and students by combining the neuroscience of learning and technology. I write about that topic in all my books and will be writing a chapter about it my next book (almost finished) for ASCD, tentatively called, How Math Adds Up in the Brain. You'll see release information about it and links to the articles on my website. Through the website you can email me and I'll let you know when the book is out. Until then, you'll find lots in the links already on my website.
So glad you are spreading the light,

Denny Atkinson's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I have been waiting (impatiently) for the promised recording of the webinar...How can I get it...whom shall I contact?

Denny Atkinson
Staff Development Specialist
Erie 2 Chautauqua Cattaraugus BOCES

David Tikiob's picture
Anonymous (not verified)

I would love to be able to view the webinar. I was told the archived version would become available in a few days. Any chance it is available? Thanks.

Darla Hatton's picture

As the Group Leader for the Learning and Attention Difficulties Group at Great Schools, these links might have been useful to your audience:


(Or, just type in http://www.schwablearning.org and you'll be redirect to the smae location.)

In addition the following parent groups may be of assistance:

for LDs and ADHD: http://community.greatschools.net/groups/11554
for Autism and Aspergers: http://community.greatschools.net/groups/18940

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