Welcome to my collection of blog entries, resources, books and, well, anything that helps the quest of understanding the brain's impact on change, learning, growth and the human condition.
Principles of Brain Function
What we seem to know now about the brain includes these core principles:
- It is THE most complex system known to man, and any model, analogy or metaphor that we use to describe the brain is inadequate beyond measure
- It is THE most resource intensive organ in your body - it comprises only 2-3% of your mass, yet it consumes 20-25% of your metabolic resources
- It seems to be a zero-sum economy - the limit on resources means that when the brain focuses on one key function (e.g. remembering that joke), it does so at the cost of other functions (e.g. listening to the conversation)
- Contains around 86 billion neurons
- More than 50% of the matter in your brain is fat, where it comprises the key component in the sheath that surrounds nerve fibres, increasing conductivity massively
- The brain changes, on a second-by-second basis, far more than we ever previously thought
But rather than reading, how about you watch these...
Recent Blog Posts about the brain:
Ever wondered why change can be so difficult? Many wonderful change models exist, yet all but a few truly consider the brain and neuroscience. This missing element from change management often explains change success stories, as much as the disasters. If you are a change agent (i.e. a teacher, leader, parent, manager...) ignore the brain at your peril!
Based on contemporary neuroscience, we suggest a model of two mind states: the blue zone – where we are at our best – and the red zone where we operate well below our full capabilities. In terms of our brain’s resources these two zones or mind states represent having our resources in the most modern parts of the brain, the blue zone, and having them in the more primitive parts, the red zone.
Teaching is a complex social activity, and while teacher training prepares teachers well around content expertise and delivery, very little is done to skill teachers in behaviour engagement. Behaviour engagement/management, in what is already a high-stress profession, remains one of the most significant stressors for teachers, yet little has been done systematically to solve the problem.