In “Why Kids Shouldn’t Sit Still in Class” (NY Times, March 21, 2017) Donna de La Cruz wrote:
“We fall into this trap that if kids are at their desks with their heads down and are silent and writing, we think they are learning,” Mr. Gatens added. “But what we have found is that the active time used to energize your brain makes all those still moments better,” or more productive.
A 2013 report from the Institute of Medicine concluded that children who are more active “show greater attention, have faster cognitive processing speed and perform better on standardized academic tests than children who are less active.” And a study released in January by Lund University in Sweden shows that students, especially boys, who had daily physical education, did better in school.“
Daily physical activity is an opportunity for the average school to become a high-performing school,” said Jesper Fritz, a doctoral student at Lund University and physician at the Skane University Hospital in Malmo who was the study’s lead author.
Sometimes, truth is found by looking beyond the superficial. We will not getting students to go better at learning by having them spend more and more time “learning.” They will fail at it if they do not get enough sleep, species-appropriate nutrition, exercise, free movement in a complex environment, and free play.
But that’s a key aspect of good thinking and reasoning: looking for the causes of a thing.
We have to look for what is the cause, not what we speculate is the cause. And we have to put a thing in its context: for humans, that means looking at learning in context of human life and evolution. Doing better at something does not come from “more, more, more” of it.
But to do that we have to learn real principles of logic and reasoning. Which too few know because of bad ideas too prevalent in our society and culture.
I can help. Not because I’m smarter or special or a genius — I wish! — but because I’ve learned from people who know. As Newton said, if I can see so much and so far, it’s becauseI stand on the shoulders of giants.
You want some training in logic, reasoning, thinking skills? I teach, tutor, and train it. Or I could give a class at your company. Just call, text, or email.