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« Marbles and "lasers" | Main | Did you know.... »

February 05, 2007

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Douglas Blane

As a science teacher and education journalist, I'll be fascinated to hear what the two of you find out. Brain Gym has been mentioned to me by teachers many times, but I'd no idea its scientific basis was so flimsy.

Matthew Boyle

Hi Kate, I'm interested in your brain gym crusade. Also speaking as an ex science teacher, I have found the research to fall far short of saying anything like the brain gym enthusiasts claim for it. On the credit side, the activities can be fun "focussing" activities for tired or bored classes; but nothing more than that I suspect. Carla Hanniford's book on "smart moves" is quite convincingly technical and if I recall, quotes some actual research, but it didn't add up to the claims that are made for it. A brain gym trainer once told me that their head honcho won't publish his research; thats enough for any scientific thinker to know its pants.

My colleague who got the FOI however probably hates you!

Anyway, how about joining us on our Inside Learning podcast to talk about it among your other passions. Cheers!

John Connell

Given that you are blogging the results as they come back to you, Kate, why encourage others to make their own FOI requests? The questions you are asking are good ones - the whole Brain Gym bandwagon has always seemed very iffy to me - but multiple questions asked by lots of people means more public money spent complying than is strictly necessary. If some people ask even a slightly different questions, councils will be duty-bound to research the detail of the question asked - and money spent on compliance with FOI is money that can't be spent on the classroom or any other local authority responsibility.

I'm happy to watch the results as you blog them - perhaps you should encourage others to do the same rather than waste public resources with multiple requests for the same information?

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