Presentation on theme: "Motivation and Neuroscience of Learning 2011. What the best Teachers do: Motivating Students."— Presentation transcript:
Motivation and Neuroscience of Learning 2011
What the best Teachers do: Motivating Students
What is Motivation? Motivation is defined as the purposeful engagement in classroom tasks & study to master concepts How do you know when your students are motivated?
Motivation – Question 1 Think about & jot down answer: Remember a class or workshop that you attended where you were provoked, interested, or motivated. Why were you provoked, interested or motivated?
Motivation – Question 2 Think about & jot down answer: Remember a class or workshop that you attended where you were bored, uninterested, or unmotivated. Why were you bored, uninterested, or unmotivated?
Motivation – What We Know What do we know already about why we are provoked, interested, or motivated? What do we know already about why we are NOT motivated? Is this applicable to our students?
What Most Teachers Do Most teachers motivate by Rewards or Punishments
8 Motivation by Rewards Rewards are based on needs Student are motivated to earn the reward (the A), if the student needs the grade Have you ever coasted through a class, not caring about your grade as long as it was passing?
9 Motivation – Why Rewards Do Not Always Work Success Achievers Motivated to Succeed Low Fear of Failure Over-Strivers Motivated to Succeed High Fear of Failure Failure Avoiders Indifferent to success High Fear of Failure Failure Acceptors Not Motivated to Succeed High Fear of Failure
10 How do the Best College Teachers Motivate? Students learn best (because they were motivated) when: Student were actively engaging their brains (a.k.a., active learning) How do the Best do this?...
How Do We Motivate? Tap into student values What students think is important Focus on: Tasks that are challenging Tasks that are interesting Tasks that meet a goal Tap into student expectations What students think they can accomplish Focus on: Ability to learn is controllable Effort is controllable Professor expects success
Natural Critical Learning Environment 1. Students confront a problem 2. The students find the problem interesting or important 3. The environment is challenging yet supportive, & students have a sense of control 4. Students collaborate on the problem 5. Students know their work will be considered fairly and honestly 6. Students know they can try, fail, and receive feedback before grades Create a lesson using these steps
Other Motivation Tips 1. Get your students attention, and keep it! 2. Start with the students, not your discipline 3. Seek commitments 4. Help students learn outside class 5. Engage students in disciplinary thinking 6. Create diverse learning experiences
What is learning? CHANGING the structure & actions of NEURONS so they HOLD INFORMATION in LONG TERM MEMORY in TEMPORAL & PARIETAL LOBES of the CORTEX
LEARNING requires NEURONS to CHANGE
Learning requires MANY neuron changes BUT two major changes are 1 Changing the amounts of neurotransmitters that neurons produce 2 Changing the connections between neurons
( 1) Learning requires neurons to make MORE & LESS & DIFFERENT transmitters
(2) Learning requires neurons to make NEW LINKS & DELETE EXISTING LINKS with other neurons
+ & - Bad News & Good News for Teachers in Current Neuroscience Findings
4 important negative findings from neuroscience 5 important positive findings from neuroscience 4 NEGATIVES & 5 POSITIVES
Bad news finding # 1 WE HAVE NO INTRINSIC MOTIVATION TO LEARN ACADEMIC MATERIAL
Food Water Sex Drugs of Abuse
Feel pleasant touch ( Rolls et al ) See attractive faces ( Aharon et al ) Hear positive words ( Hamann & Mao 2002 ) Interact with others ( Rilling et al ) Gain social status ( Tooby & Cosmides, 2002 )
Human motivation system Rewarding experiences trigger amygdala activity trigger dopamine release trigger frontal lobe activity
AMYGDALA Computes Emotional intensity of an experience Degree of negative or positive emotion
FRONTAL LOBE Stores the reward value of experience Activates behaviors leading to the most rewarded outcome
All other complex experiences are conditioned with primary rewards $ $ USE OF MONEY WORKING LEARNING FOLLOWING RULES
Motivation to Learn School Subjects is Conditioned Most cultures condition children with 3 primary rewards for successful learning using food teacher & parent approval increased peer social status
Bad news finding # 2 THERE IS NO EVIDENCE FOR LEARNING TRANSFER
Reviews of research show no evidence for learning transfer Barnett & Ceci (2002 ) Clement & Lecoutre (2004) Dixon & Dohn (2003) Mayer (2004)
No transfer means no free lunch NO SPECIFIC TRANSFER means Learning to add DOES NOT make learning to divide easier NO GENERAL TRANSFER means Learning math DOES NOT make you a better learner in general
Bad news finding # 3 THERE IS NO EVIDENCE FOR MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCES
Gardners Newest Intelligences Existential = feeling at one with the cosmos Mental Searchlight = people with high IQ test scores scan widely Laser = artists and artisans who generate the advances (as well as the catastrophes) of society
Gardner Admits No Supporting Data Exists for Multiple Intelligences Allix (2000) no evidence Jie-Qi Chen (2004) no evidence Gardner (2004) no evidence Gardner and Connell (2000, p. 292) conceded that there is little hard evidence for Multiple Intelligences theory (2000, p. 292)
NEUROSCIENCE RESEARCH REFUTES MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCES There is consistent significant evidence for a general intelligence factor G that appears to be working memory this stands against Multiple Intelligences (Colom et al. 2004) There is consistent significant evidence that brain systems for cognitive functions are overlapping this stands against Multiple Intelligences (Lieberman, 2002)
NEUROSCIENCE RESEARCH REFUTES MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCES, cont. There is evidence for specific innate cognition modules (Gallistel, 2003) 1 Fast-mapping of word to object 2 Person recognition of face, voice, clothes 3 Obligation computation of what we owe others and what they owe us 4 Imitation of all aspects of the behavior of others
ADAPTED COGNITION MODULES STAND AGAINST MULTIPLE INTELLIGENCES Each adapted cognition module is supported by evidence of its neural operations (MI intelligences are not). A given adapted cognition module, like Mirror Neuron Tissue, operates using our vision, hearing, speaking, gesturing, social awarenessthis combines parts of 4 of Gardners intelligencesthus negating their individual existences
Bad news finding # 4 EVERY SINGLE MEMORY WE HAVE IS COMPLETELY UNSTABLE
Heraclitus was right
You cannot step into the same river twice EVERY TIME YOU REMEMBER SOMETHING, IT IS A DIFFERENT MEMORY, BECAUSE THE ACT OF RECALL IS A RECONSTRUCTION
RECALL TRANSFORMS OUR MEMORIES When we remember our brain takes the memory apart, updates the memory, brings the memory to consciousness rhen makes new proteins for a new structure for the memory as it goes back into long-term storage.
Good news findings # 1, 2, 3, 4, 5 Neuroscience research has found 5 promoter mechanisms whereby short term learning changes into long term learning
5 major promoters of learning = INNATE LEARNING PROGRAMS (Gallistel, 2003) REPETITION of INFORMATION (Squire and Kandel, 2000) EXCITEMENT at the time of learning (Cahill & Gorski, 2003; LeDoux, 2002) EATING CARBOHYDRATES at time of learning (Korol, 2002) 8-9 HOURS OF SLEEP after learning (Kuriyama, Stickgold, & Walker, 2004)\
The first promoters are innate learning programs called ADAPTED COGNITION MODULES SPECIALIZED BRAIN MODULES EVOLVED TO COMPUTE SPECIFIC INFORMATION OUTSIDE OUR CONSCIOUSNESS IN ORDER TO MAKE THAT PROCESS EASIER AND FASTER BECAUSE THOSE COMPUTATIONS HAVE BEEN IMPORTANT FOR OUR SURVIVAL
INNATE PROGRAMS = Adapted Cognition Modules are very specific computation systems Adapted cognition modules promote quick and easy learning of certain types of information: We learn peoples faces, typical movements, voices, clothing, odors very easily because we have FACE RECOGNITION TISSUE in our temporal lobes We learn speech and tool use motor skills more easily because we have special MIRROR NEURONS in our frontal lobes that copy the speech and movements of others
ADAPTED COGNITION MODULES ALSO INCLUDE COMPUTING FREQUENCIES BASIC COUNTING SKILLS COMPUTING WHAT OTHERS OWE US AND WHAT WE OWE THEM FAST MAPPING OF WORD LABEL TO OBJECTS AND SITUATIONS COMPUTING SOCIAL STATUS AND INSULTS TO SOCIAL STATUS
The 2 nd Learning Promoter is REPETITION Squire & Kandel (2000) Reviewed neurobiology of learning Brain forms long term memories depending on the number of times the event or fact is repeated
REPETITION Squire & Kandel (2000) Reviewed neurobiology of learning Brain forms long term memories depending on the number of times the event or fact is repeated
Repetition causes neurons to make MORE and LESS neurotransmitter
Repetition causes neurons to make MORE and FEWER CONNECTIONS with other neurons
ORIGIN OF TEACHING IS REPETITION We all unconsciously repeat important information in conversations All cultures teach important stories by verbal repetition Chinese teachers were taught to say everything TWICE… Most teachers discover that repetition is valuable
The 3 rd learning promoter is EXCITEMENT LeDoux has studied the brain for 30 years & reported (2002) that we remember particularly well…those things that arouse our emotions
Cahill & Gorski (2003) research
Excitement automatically increases certain neurotransmitters
Excitement sets NEURON CONNECTIONS in the ON position
The 4 th learning promoter is EATING CARBOHYDRATES Greenwood and Winocur (2001) research: high-fat diet impairs brain glucose metabolism needed to form long term memory Korol (2002) research: eating carbohydrates enhanced memory (Smith, 2003) research: lack of breakfast impairs learning
Eating carbohydrates gives the brain glucose to organize new synapse locations
Eating carbohydrates provides glucose to make glycoproteins that bind neurons to one another
EXTREME DIETING IMPAIRS LEARNING A majority of young women age 12 to 30 yrs in the US are on fad diets. During periods of dieting, their learning will be significantly slowed and it will be harder for them to retain information.
The 5 th learning promoter is 8-9 HOURS OF SLEEP SPECIAL ISSUE of the journal Learning and Memory (2004 V11, N6) reports a wide range of evidence for consolidation of learning during sleep
Macbeth ( ) Sleep that knits up the ravelld sleave of care, The death of each days life, sore labours bath, Balm of hurt minds, great natures second course, Chief nourisher in lifes feast.
SLEEP IS A FREE LEARNING TOOL DREAMING SLEEP promotes differential strengthening of neurons in networks holding learned information NON-DREAMING SLEEP activates calcium channels that biologically repeat the neural path of learning to force long term storage
DREAMING SLEEP causes differential strengthening by altering neurotransmitters
NON-DREAMING sleep causes new neuron CONNECTIONS to be automatically repeated
Research shows that TOO LITTLE SLEEP or IMPAIRED SLEEP = IMPAIRED LEARNING Alcohol ingested after a day of learning inhibits dreaming sleep and impairs memory storage of the day s information Drugs of abuse used after learning have similar bad effects on sleep and the day s learning A majority of teens, college students and working adults in the US are sleep- deprived
Of the 5 major learning promoters INNATE LEARNING PROGRAMS (Gallistel, 2002) REPETITION of INFORMATION (Squire and Kandel, 2000) EXCITEMENT at the time of learning (Cahill & Gorski, 2003; LeDoux, 2002) EATING CARBOHYDRATES at time of learning (Korol, 2002) 8-9 HOURS OF SLEEP after learning (Kuriyama, Stickgold, & Walker, 2004)\
TEACHERS CAN CONTROL ONLY 2 PROMOTERS Repetition & Excitement
BUT TEACHERS CAN ALSO PERMIT AND ENCOURAGE HEALTHY CARBOHYDRATE SNACKING AND TALK TO STUDENTS AND PARENTS ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF SLEEP