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Teachers and neuroscientists at the same table
Teachers bring with them years of training and real experiences with real students in real settings—classrooms, hallways, cafeterias, recital halls, soccer fields, and basketball courts. No one cares more deeply about the success of students than teachers. They constantly observe students and draw conclusions in order to work on new strategies. They wake up at 4:00 a.m. agonizing about George, who seems to hate reading, or Mary, who still can't write, or Seth, who still can't solve a quadratic equation. They spend years confronting a wide range of learning problems. Not only do they develop deep insight into those problems, but they are also endlessly imaginative in addressing them. They are experts on student behavior, and are artists in the classroom.
Neuroscientists bring new insights into the brain itself. They devote themselves to exploring how the brain learns, how we recruit our different mental capacities to solve problems, how we compensate for our weaknesses, and how we capitalize on our strengths. Neuroscientists wake up at 4:00 a.m. wondering how to design an experiment to understand how a boy who has had his right hemisphere removed manages to do things he couldn't be expected to do—paint pictures, understand tonal nuances of speech, and succeed intellectually and socially in school. One series of experiments to test a (top)
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single hypothesis can take years to carry out, sort out, and write up. Neuroscientists are experts in the mind and brain, bringing science into the classroom.
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Mind, Brain, and Education