Welcome to the March 2018 Learning Brain News.

There's lots of news this month about the amazing things our brains do... mental rehearsal, developing empathy, synchronising brain waves to ease pain and the brain secrets television series with Dr Michael Merzenich.

Plus, read about a plea to teach soft skills, not knowledge

Best wishes,

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Devon Barnes
Learning Brain News

PS: Dr Eric Jensen presents another live webinar, so students can compete with machines. Details below.

Social and emotional learning video2.pngSocial & Emotional Learning

5 Keys to Social & Emotional Learning Success

Get a Ready-To-Use Social & Emotional Learning curriculum for your school.

Latest Research

How ‘mental rehearsal’ preps us for action

Girl thinking of becoming a doctor - isolated over a white background.jpegNeuroscientists have discovered how the brain learns physical tasks, even in the absence of real-world movement.

The results could point the way toward a deeper understanding of what mental rehearsal is.

Researchers also believe the findings could lead to a future where brain-machine interfaces, usually thought of as prosthetics for people with paralysis, are also tools for understanding the brain. Read more

Portrait of happy kids having fun at the park.jpegYounger and older siblings contribute to each other's developing empathy

A new longitudinal study found both older and younger siblings positively influence each other's empathic development over time. Read more.



Mid-section of couple holding hands in cafeteria-491086-edited.jpegHolding Hands Can Sync Brainwaves and Ease Pain

Reach for the hand of a loved one in pain and not only will your breathing and heart rate synchronise with theirs, your brain wave patterns will couple up too, according to a study published this week in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.

The study also found that the more empathy a comforting partner feels for a partner in pain, the more their brainwaves fall into sync. And the more those brain waves sync, the more the pain goes away. Read more.

What's On?



Register for the Live Webinar

Leadership Tips that (Really!) Impact Student Achievement

Dr. Eric Jensen will provide new insights into what is keeping your most struggling students from reaching their potential, and how you can change that using just one tool.

He’ll also discuss how having a better understanding of how your students and teachers’ brains work can help you create a learning environment that benefits everybody.

Register for the live Webinar now

Brain secrets merzenich.pngBrain Secrets with Dr Merzenich

Fast ForWord founder, Dr. Mike Merzenich, will be appearing on public television in USA. His ground-breaking brain plasticity research will be featured in the special “Brain Secrets with Dr. Michael Merzenich.”

If you are in the USA, keep an eye on www.pbs.org for broadcast times.


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The Learning Success Blog

Jack Ma robots replacing humans2.pngTeach Soft Skills, Not Knowledge, to Compete with Machines

“Only by changing education can our children compete with machines.” That’s what Jack Ma, founder of Alibaba believes. Alibaba is China’s largest e-commerce company. On some measures it is bigger than Amazon.com.

Speaking at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, Mr Ma said, “We cannot teach our kids to compete with machines. Teachers must stop teaching knowledge. We have to teach something unique, so a machine can never catch up with us.” Read more.

Careers Guidance for Secondary Students

Five Causes of Anxiety About Transitioning From School

Stressed teenager.jpgMany students find the final year of high school can be particularly challenging.

As well as the pressure of preparing and sitting for their final exams, students can become anxious about what happens after they leave school.

The Learning Capacity Podcast spoke with career counsellor, Gordon Doyle about the most common causes of this anxiety, and what students, their parents and teachers can do to help reduce it.

maths number friends.jpgFree Download

Maths Skills Booster – March 2018 Worksheets

Ready for your new set of Maths Skills Booster Worksheets? You can download the March worksheets here.

Did you miss out on the original Maths Skills Booster? You can get it here.

group kids playing.jpgHow to Support Social Development in Young Children

A child’s social skills are a compelling predictor of his/her future success both in and out of school. Like any developing skill, social skills require support, practice and repetition. Get the free download to help you promote social development in your children or students.

The Obstacle Is the Way book.jpgBook of the Month

The Obstacle Is the Way: The Timeless Art of Turning Trials into Triumph

How do you teach your students that challenges are not bad, that hard work is often necessary to achieve whatever it is they want? Author Ryan Holiday shows how an ancient Roman philosophy reveals how to turn adversity into advantage. Read more.

Swift app.pngApp of the Month

Swift Playgrounds

Knowing how to code is as important as being fluent in a foreign language these days, and Swift Playgrounds is a great way to get started.

This app enables users to learn coding basics with fun, but challenging, interactive puzzles. No coding knowledge is necessary for this engaging app.