Set of 8: The Brain

Anna Blakeslee



This Set of 8 is about the ever-fascinating, human brain.  Technology and the availability and lower costs of MRI scans have recently allowed neurologist and psychologist to study the brain in a more in-depth manner.  A lot of research has been emerging on the development, functions, and stages of the brain. By understanding the brain, educators are able to focus instruction and interactions with students that support students where they are.  Brain research can also enlighten us to why certain age groups or situations can lead to behaviors that can be baffling or difficult. I chose resources that have had the most impact on my thinking about the brain and the development of the brain and how that relates and supports student growth. The resources have been compiled together with the objectives of:

  • Understanding how the brain processes information and learning.

  • Internalizing the unique developmental stages of students’ brains.

  • Exploring strategies to support the academic, intellectual, social and emotional development of students.

What You Should Know About Your BrainThis article informs how your brain processes information.  It discusses what can block or get in the way of sending information to the right part of your brain and what you can do to keep your brain processing in a healthy, natural way.  (0.50 credit hour)

The Amazing Adolescent Brain In this chapter, Thomas Armstrong outlines the development of the brain with specific attention given to the adolescent brain.  Experiments and research are shared for the reader to fully understand how and why adolescents may behave in certain ways. Educators get a better understanding of what works according to the adolescent brain. This is the first chapter of the book The Power of the Adolescent Brain. (0.75 credit hour)

The Boss of My Brain This article examines ways to help students be more metacognitive specific to each level of the student.  It also outlines the importance of metacognition in learning. The author highlights different activities or strategies that educators can use at different levels. (0.50 credit hour)

Understanding How the Brain Thinks  In this article, educator and neurologist Judy Willis describes how brains develop critical thinking skills. (0.50 credit hour)

The Science of the Individual The article captures the idea that there is no such thing as average, and in education, that students are individuals.  Diving deeper is a 50-minute Talks at Google video by Todd Rose. He enlightens on the history and where the individual science came from.  He also describes the three principles of individuality that clarifies how to take advantage of this new science in education, business, and life. (1.25 credit hours)

The Myth of Average In this TEDx talk the speaker, Todd Rose of the Harvard Graduate School of Education, suggests the notion that there is no average student. His point is when we design instruction for the average student, we design for no one. (0.75 credit hour)

The Case For Teaching For and With Metacognition This book chapter in Teaching Students To Drive Their Brains makes the case that teaching about metacognition can help students better understand their learning. (0.75 credit hour)

Fluency Without Fear This article by Jo Boaler explores the way we learn math and how that relates to fluency and memorization of math facts. This article is full of research-based evidence on how the brain works when learning math and the differences of memorization.   Dr. Boaler also gives examples of lessons and tasks to be used in the classroom to develop number sense. (0.75 credit hour)


Click here to access this Set of 8 from the Cultivated Sets.


Sets of 8 are intended to guide learners through a series of resources discussing research and philosophy and also showing applications of strategies to implement in the classroom. All Sets of 8 resources are housed in the PD Market, allowing you to earn contact hours for license recertification and tracked through RANDA if you have a RANDA account.   In order to receive recertification credit, you must complete the resource by submitting answers to the questions in the Response/Reflection tab. If all Sets of 8 resources are completed in the PD Market, you can receive 5.25 recertification credit hours. If you would like more information about how to complete a PD Market resource and receive recertification hours, please watch the informational video here.