Thursday, November 13, 2008

Broccoli or Dessert Brain?

The broccoli stomach: Fills up quickly.

The dessert stomach: Always wants more.

Same thing with brains. There are broccoli brains which can't stand school and there are dessert brains which yearn for more innovation and learning.

Hugh Osborn explains more:
"As New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman and so many others keep pointing out, competing in the empower-and-connect twenty-first-century world will require a highly effective and creative education system. Science and technology are not about white coats and circuit boards but about problem solving and creative thinking -- in a word, innovation. There's no point in pretending that schools teaching primarily to the broccoli brain will ever rise to the challenge Friedman describes.

"But one rapidly growing group of kids is familiar with personal innovation: Gamers are enthusiastic learners who have their dessert brains fully engaged. Indeed, the results of a yearlong study by the Federation of American Scientists suggest that computer games have the power to teach analytical skills, team building, and problem solving. Other research shows that gamers make better managers because they can innovate and, not surprisingly, instinctively understand rapid decision making in changing environments. Stripped of their violent content, games can be powerful (and tasty) learning tools. But most teachers can't channel these tools into activities that boost motivation while improving test scores."

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