Why Maxims? Why 42?

Forty two is a large number. Take them one at a time. Think about each one deeply. Consider how each one can be applied in the classroom and various other learning/teaching contexts. Take notes of your thoughts. These notes will be very useful for before, during, and after the conference!

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Note: Connecting these maxims to better teaching is our ultimate goal -- so these maxims are not to be regarded as dogma, but as a springboard for further discovery!

My team has spent the past several years synthesizing hundreds of books and scientific articles in and around the fields of neuroscience, psychology, and education.

We then found the most common findings among them, made them practical for the classroom teacher, and then boiled them down into these bite-sized nuggets, in the spirit of Ben Franklin's Poor Richard's Almanack.

However, our work is not finished! We are constantly working on this list and eagerly seek your feedback on them; this is a dynamic and collaborative effort!

The first step is to learn the maxims.
The next steps are to talk about them with someone (use the forum), test your maxims-based ideas based in your classroom.
Then, report back on your findings so that we can better our list together!

This is how we see neuroELT growing dynamically: it is a constant dialogue between teachers and researchers, creating a positive cycle of learning and growth… and we are so glad to have you with us!
Maxims 1-10 (click for details!)
1. “Emotion” drives learning
2. “Intelligence” is overrated
3. “Cognition” is context dependent.
4. “Learning” is not understanding.
5. “Understanding” is the synthesis of and ability to apply prior learning.
6. “Reflexes” compound into action skills.
7. “Skills” compound into representations (and then abstractions).
8. “Cognitive development” is age dependent and domain specific.
9. "Knowledge" is non-transferable.
10. “Memory” is a myth (and metaphor)

Maxims 11-21 (click for details!)
11. “Teaching” should be differentiated and done in high support contexts.
12. “Regression” is necessary for growth.
13. “Choices” fuel learner motivation.
14. “Prediction” is a tremendously powerful tool.
15. “Realtime feedback” can be highly motivational (and educational!)
16. “Aha moments” cement connections in the brain.
17-A. “Plastic” is the brain, and why we learn
17-B. “Lose” what you don't use
18. “Alignment” delivers us from chaos.
19. “Happy students” are preferable students.
20. “Sleep” is necessary for any long term learning.
21. "Sleep on it" is wonderful advice.

Maxims 22-30 (click for details!)
22. No "bias", no learning.
23. "Solvable mysteries" are central to all natural learning processes.
24. "Performances" of Understanding are essential for good assessment.
25. "Assess" in three ways.
26. "Comforting" solutions are the chosen solutions, even if they are false.
27. "Needs" are unknown; stay flexible.
28. "Rigidity" is the root of stress.
29. "Varying" helps recall.
30. "Creativity" delivers us from ruts.

Maxims 31-42 (click for details!)
31. "Surprise" me; surprise yourself.
32. "Graphically" organize.
33. Decide upon "top-down" or "bottom-up" teaching.
34. "Personalize" the content to captivate students
35. "Cool" rooms are cool!
36. "Bright" rooms produce bright students!
37. "Healthy" bodies make healthy brains
38. Establish "Active" break times
39. "Meditate" for better learning
40. "Spice" up your classroom to engage the other senses
41. Encourage "mistakes"
42. Teach for the "DATC"
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