Neuroplasticity: How do we learn?

Neuroplasticity: How do we learn?

1) The two videos below are short introduction to how the brain changes as we learn new things.  Pay attention to the new “roads” that are created as you start thinking about things differently or start doing things differently.  These “roads” are called neurological pathways, these are the connections between brain cells that allow us to store new experiences (learn new experiences) and later on act on them through behavior, thoughts and emotions.

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Neuroplasticity (an overview) (2 minutes)


​Neuroplasticity and learning explained (2:55)


​What is neuroplasticity?

What are the 4 variables that can be changed in order to maximize the retainment of knowledge?

What is so important in taking breaks between leaning sessions, spacing our learning?

2) Our brain is made of nerve cells.  Neurons are the nerve cells responsible for receiving and sending information.  This is a neuron:

The neuron is composed of:

a. A body (Soma), where information is being processed, integrated and analyzed.  b. Dendrites, arm-like extensions that receive information from thei. outside environment such as outside temperature, smells, sights, things touching our skin, etc.),ii. internal environment of the body (pain in different part your body, what is your blood pressure, heart rate, internal temperature, how much oxygen you have in your blood, etc.),iii. and from other neurons c. An axon, a (usually) long “arm” that sends information to other neurons or other cells within the body.3) The video below gives an overview of how the brain forms memories through neurological pathways.  Pay close attention since the narrator has an Irish(?) accent and at times may be difficult to understand.

The learning Brain (7:00 minutes)

How do adrenalin and cortisol affect the way we learn and behave?

What factors affect the ability of the brain to focus and learn successfully, behave and overall for the brain to function properly?

4) Watch the first 6:30 minutes of the video and answer the following questions:

What are the three ways by which the brain changes to support learning? Explain each one.

Lara Boyd: After watching this, your brain will not be the same (watch the first 6:30 minu