For decades, educators have been teaching and educating without knowing the neural connections that are formed in children at every developmental stage. During their academic and professional training, educators spend some of their time planning, programming, and motivating students to maximize their personal qualities, skills, and talents. However, until the last few years and thanks to educational renewal movements, no one had given any thought to children, their brains, and the relevance of their brains for teaching and learning.
In this moment of reflection and change, neuroeducation, a new and relatively unknown area for teachers, gains in importance and provides educators with the necessary information about the brain and how it works in children.
What is neuroeducation?
Neuroeducation, or neurodidactics, is a new vision of education based on teaching strategies and educational technologies that focus on brain function. This relatively new area combines neuroscience, psychology and education with the aim of optimizing the teaching and learning process. It is therefore important to know and understand its role and its contribution to the education system (Mora, 2017).
Salvador Martínez (2017), Professor of Human Anatomy and Embryology at the Universidad Miguel Hernández and Director at the Instituto de Neurociencia (Institute of Neuroscience) in Alicante (Spain), sees education as an effect on the brain. The brain is the recipient of education because everything we think, feel, and perceive affects the brain. In every child we find a brain with special features and functions that determine the learning process, since behavior is completely determined by the brain. Hence, education makes sense when educators look at a child and see not just a heart and soul, but also a brain that is maturing and changing. In this way, educators are responsible for teaching and motivating children to develop all of their skills to change their behavior and behavior
Acquire new learning, critical, as learning is responsible for creating new neural pathways and synaptic plasticity seems to be the basis of all learning processes. Hence, neurons are responsible for making new connections – numerous during childhood – when children have a meaningful learning experience – that is, when they develop and transform their neural circuits and adapt to new learning environments due to neuroplasticity.
Scientific discoveries and changes in education: “Learning by Doing”
Scientific discoveries in the field of neuroscience have contributed to the transformation and modification of teaching methods. According to Gamo (2016) and Guillén (2017), experts in educational neuroscience, it is important to teach based on neural processes. Hence, it offers a methodological approach based on executive functions that focuses on activating learning, creating and consolidating content, and evaluating this process in the context of emotions and social relationships. Children should study in the process, taking into account their abilities and skills, as this serves to ensure the creation and restructuring of neural connections in order to achieve their full learning potential. Children need to be motivated and develop their attention and memory skills. When these factors are taken into account, their learning is guaranteed. However, in most educational centers, educators take a methodological approach that focuses only on memorizing information that is neither relevant nor motivating, without considering the memory and reasoning processes that the child must follow in order to internalize that knowledge of what learning leads to absolute failure.
Family and neuroeducation
In a family setting, Álvaro Bilbao (2015), neuropsychologist and doctor of health psychology, emphasizes the need to guide parents to learn about the neural functions of their children and to be able to participate in upbringing in an informed way, that is, trying and traditional upbringing – based on absolute affection – to be modified by educating and promoting their intellectual qualities in harmony with their emotions.
Hence, the family – a crucial factor in a child’s neural connectivity – is the most important context for the child’s development. Families can therefore contribute to the brain and emotional maturity of their children through proper nutrition and recreation, encouraging physical activity, sporting and creative activities, and creating a positive environment of trust in which they can apply their knowledge to reality (mora), 2017).
If you enjoyed this post, you may also find the following interesting:
Bilbao, A. (2015). The child’s brain explained it to the parents. Barcelona: editorial platform
Gamo, JR (2016). Neuromyth in Education: Learning from Neuroscience. Barcelona: editorial platform
Guillén, J. (2017). Neuroeducation: From Theory to Practice. Madrid: Alliance.
Marina, YES (2011). The child’s brain: the great opportunity. Barcelona: Ariel.
Mora, F. (2017). How the brain works. Madrid: Alliance.
Mora, F. (2017). Neuroeducation: You can only learn what you love. Madrid: Alliance.
Latest contributions from the Murcian Association of Neuroscience (See everything)
Neuroeducation: a new educational challenge for teachers
Neuroeducation is the new challenge for teachers as strategies that focus on brain function become increasingly important.
Murcian Association of Neuroscience (AMUNE)