Popular Tools and Practices for Brain Based Learning

Though all learning requires the learner to use thy brain, this type called “Brain Based Learning” differs a little.

Defined as teaching methods, lesson designs, and school programs that are based on the latest scientific research about how the brain learns, including such factors as cognitive development, how students learn differently as they age, grow, and mature socially, emotionally, and cognitively.  

Core Principles of Brain Based Learning:

- The brain is a parallel processor.

- Learning engages the whole physiology.

- The search for meaning is innate.

- The search for meaning comes through patterning.

- Emotions are critical to patterning.

- The brain processes both whole and parts simultaneously.

- Learning involves both focused attention and peripheral perception.

- Learning involves both conscious and unconscious processes.

- We understand best when facts are embedded in natural, spatial memory.

- Learning is enhanced by challenge and inhibited by threat.

- Each brain is unique.

- The big picture cannot be separated from the details.

Because every brain is different, educators should allow learners to customize their own environments. And educators can also do a little to help students by engaging in following practices.

Take a look!

- Utilize a two part approach in the classroom by holding classroom discussions, decision making scenarios, case studies and exercises that requires logical thinking, brainstorming and mind mapping thus focusing on whole-brain learning.

- Teacher should provide with the big picture of the content in the beginning followed by details representing the subtopics. Thus following from whole to part.

- Teachers should provide learners with choice and a diverse menu of activities to suit their cognitive cycles and learning styles. Teachers can also repeat the content using different method and at various timing and at the same time also help the student become aware of their best time for learning.

- Teachers should incorporate energizers and should plan activities in a way that it gives learners a scope to move around, stretch or change postures so that they can monitor and manage their own energy levels. So the teachers should offer novel activities, learning locations and choice that require moving.

- Teachers may also discuss about sleeping patterns with the learners because some learners may just need either more sleep or better quality sleep.

- Teachers should encourage student generated learning goals, ideas and experiences.

- Provide learners with the necessary resources that they need to complete their assignments and also to reduce undue stress.

- Use color handouts and vary color widely on your other visual displays instead of the same backgrounds.

- While making lectures or presentations teachers should use objects, photographs, graphics, charts, slides, video segments, bulletin board display, colors, posters, mind maps, drawings, etc. so that the students may be challenged to generate images through visualization. Teachers should create a more multisensory environment.

- Encourage cooperative as well as individual learning among students.

- Before beginning a new topic, ask the students to discuss it orally or to represent it graphically using a mind map thus giving the brain a visual storage space for the new information. During teaching ask the students to continually make maps, graphic organizers, etc. and at the end of the course/ topic ask them to make a play or a large sized map of their learning. The reason is to relate the learning to their own lives.

- Teachers should never assume that because something is relevant to them it is relevant to the students too. Teachers should help students discover their own connections rather than imposing their own. Thus teachers should give students time to link their prior learning with current learning through various ways of exploration and introspection.

Mentioned below is a list of some brain training tools that teachers can use.

1. Lumosity

This app consists of games that focus on improving the user’s memory, problem-solving capability, attention span, and thinking. There are three games in each session, and they challenge the brain by changing every time. The user has to complete the games while playing against a clock.

2. Elevate

This quick brain-training program aims to increase memory, ability to focus, and reading comprehension. The series of short exercises take only a couple of minutes each, allowing user to come back to them throughout the day. You are rewarded for your accuracy and speed and can track your progress to see whether your training is paying off.

3. Fit Brains Trainer

This brain training app has 10 sets of games that work on different areas of the brain and improve memory as well as concentration. A user is required to finish a particular task from each category on a daily basis and the app tracks the progress by a color coded graph.

4. Happify

This app comes loaded with lots of quizzes, polls and gratitude journals, which work on the fundamentals of positive psychology. The app also helps to control stress and emotions to make you feel better.


Peak is a smartphone game that focuses on increasing your cognitive skills. It is unique because it offers as much as 40 different games that gradually become harder and require you to think more and conclude better. Furthermore, the application is free and is offered in 16 different languages. You can upgrade it to Pro version called Peak Pro and have even more fun.

6. Skill Angels

SkillAngels is India’s brain skill game suit. With SkillAngels, learners can:

  • Nurture brain skills.
  • Learn and play over 500 online games.
  • Games are developed by educational experts.

Give a peek to the resources mentioned below to know a little more:

What is Brain-Based Learning

Ten Brain Based Learning Strategies

Brain-Based Learning Ideas

Brain Training: 25+ Sites and Tools to Exercise Your Brain

Bringing Brain-Based Learning Theories into the Classroom

Share your views on the concept of brain based learning?

About the Author
Author: Priyanka Gupta
Priyanka is a blogger by profession and has an increasing interest to write about the edtech space. While writing she keeps in mind the educators to come up with right resources and ideas which might be relevant for them in relation to effective use of technology in their profession and institutions/classrooms.
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