Brain Rules--John Medina


This is a book that should be on the shelves of every educator in America, indeed, most especially on the shelves of the homeschooling moms and dads across the country. At once a benign indictment of our present educational mores and an unknowing support for most of the activities of home-schooling families, it helps to illuminate why homeschooling can be such an effective strategy for most children.

Dr. Medina is a molecular biologist focused on the development of the human brain and psychiatric disorders. As such, he is a good person to speak to the validity of much of the bogus "brain science" that seems to sweep through education and industry like a moldy plague--unsubstantiated, unproved, and unmourned when it has swept on.

In this book, Medina outlines 12 "rules" about the brain that have a substantial basis in present brain research. While the book conveys the contours of the information, it is not laden with a lot of references. Indeed, one would wonder, if one were not privileged to visit the Brain Rules Site whether there was any substantiatiion for any of this.

Never fear, there is--for a single chapter nearly eight, very tightly filled PDF pages of references. But references are not the whole of the book, and they do very little good if we can't use the rest of it.

Brain Rules is written in remarkably simple prose with suggestions here and there for how to implement them in our lives, education, and business practices. They are common sense, rules we all understand from experience. A sleepy brain doesn't learn or retain well. Exercise boosts brain power, etc. Nothing startling. But what is startling, and fun, are the reasons behind the rules.

So, if you're interested in education or in how the brain functions or in how scientists think and view the world, you might fine this easy-to-read book a nice introduction.

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This page contains a single entry by Steven Riddle published on October 2, 2008 7:38 AM.

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