What Teachers Need to Know about the Brain



In recent years, the word “competences” has been one of the most used terms in education. It has become a buzz word — often void of meaning or even loaded with negative connotations. Many teachers are feeling stressed by national standards testings and standardized exams. Textbooks are full of practice tests: reading comprehension tasks, listening comprehension tasks and language in use tasks. These may be good for testing, BUT they are not necessarily good for learning.

Effective teachers understand that covering material ( in German we say “durchmachen”) is not the same as learning. Real, long-term learning needs engagement.

In order to learn, students must find meaning, i.e. personal relevance and connections to their own experiences AND they must make sense of the material; i.e. they must understand it. Learning must be 

  • active
  • engaging and
  • connect to previous knowledge


Speaking and the Brain: Part 1

Speaking and the Brain: Part 2 

The second video shows my talk at the CEBS Sprachenforum. It is quite long and includes interview parts that you might want to skip.


If you have been to one of my teacher seminars and want to download my ppt presentation, follow this link.

Leave a Reply