Emotions, Learning, and the Brain: Exploring the Educational Implications of Affective …

Luna Centifanti on the important role that emotions play in our ability to assimilate knowledge Using a rudder as an analogy for the way emotion guides learning and memory, as neuroscientist and former teacher Mary Helen Immordino-Yang does here, reminds me of my first conscious learning (and teaching) experience – in the water. After my first lessons in the pool, I spent many hours teaching objects in our house to swim. Toothbrushes bobbed in the sink, and dolls spent the day on the couch practising the breaststroke. As Immordino-Yang details, socio-emotional motivations may be so hugely important that the brain has back-up networks (albeit poorly suited ones) to support them in case the responsible part of the brain fails. The example she uses of two boys who underwent a hemispherectomy,…


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