Monday, September 20, 2010

Archive Topic: Hemispheres of the Brain

10-second review: Describes the function of the two hemispheres of the brain and urges their integration in teaching reading.

Title” “Teaching As a Whole Brain Function.” PL Fox. Reading Teacher (October 1979), pp. 7-14.

Quote: “Successful reading requires integration of the two modes of symbol processing available to the human mind. Since ancient times these modes have been dichotomized as [left-brain] logic and [right brain] intuition; analysis and synthesis;  pedantry and creativity….”

Quote: “Some educators recognize that our schools emphasize left hemisphere processing while the right hemisphere is undeveloped.”

Summary: One solution to working with both left and right brain hemispheres, according to the author, is to develop a word association wheel. Put the word in the center and then brainstorm associations. Put the color “red” in the center. One cluster will include “stop sign,” “stop!” “demands attention,” and “before it’s too late.” Another cluster: “blood,” “dying,” “old,” “Red Badge of Courage,” “brave?” “matador,” “bull,” “angry, “masculine,” and so on.

Comment: I’m just reporting the article. The author’s simple division of the characteristics of left brain and right brain is clear. The author’s solution to the problem of developing both left and right brain characteristics is less clear. What does this brainstorming/clustering have to do with reading? Well, you put the theme or topic of what the students are about to read in the center and then they brainstorm/cluster before they read. Another way of preparing for reading. I’m not sure how the activity develops left and right brain traits. RayS.

No comments: