NEUROEDUCATION AS THE SOURCE OF EDUCATIONAL PROGRAMS: A PROPOSAL BASED ON THE FINDINGS OF NEUROSCIENCE WITHIN THE FRAME OF GLOBALIZATION
Neuroscience is a discipline devoted to the study, observation and analysis of the central nervous system. It is a scientific area which branches out in subdivisions that engage in the study of brain functions. Within this framework, the Neuroeducation –or Neurodidactics– serves as a linkage between psychology and behavior and thus optimizing the learning process. It is an attempt to retrieve the genetic and evolutionary roots in of learning when it was a natural and cheerful process. According to the Baldwin effect, every time a beneficial act of learning for the survival of the species takes place, the conditions of the natural selection are altered, and therefore those genes are eventually passed on to the next generation. Moreover, it claims that the emotion-cognition binomial is inseparable. “To neuroeducate” means to use our knowledge on brain functions to teach how to learn. Mirror neurons compose the brain connections required for empathy and cooperation which are essential in today's global reality. This interdisciplinary approach provides scientific support to practical teaching methods. We are revising Kurk Fischer’s Global Theory of Evolution and both Sternberg’s Triarchic Theory of Intelligence and Gardner’s Modular Intelligence Theory. Today's world is global and comprehensive; its systems and components are interdependent due to progress and evolution. Nowadays, a child’s brain learns in a different manner and therefore we need to adapt our teaching strategies so as to make education a tool for progress. Students have diverse expectations and they wish to actively participate in the learning process. They are aware that school is merely one of a multitude of sources for learning. To date, we have only provided academic study tools and static informative content. However, we should start promoting the development of a global mindset, both dynamic and inclusive. Currently, we follow patterns based on competitiveness rather than collaboration and reflection. Nonetheless, for the student to develop as a person, education systems should provide advanced solutions that facilitate the reproduction of our integral and interdependent world.
In this educational model, teachers act as guides, stimulating the potential of every student in order to optimize the investment of each individual in the group. This investment, in turn, will replenish the student in the course of the learning process. This group learning is interactive. The cooperative games, role-playing, the collaborative discussions and sharing in the implemented activities, are key tools within this approach. Additionally, children are encouraged to act out real-life situations during the learning process. It is also worth mentioning that these activities are monitored and documented – through a series of recordings which are aimed at gaining objective scrutiny from a meta-position.
Finally, we would like to point out that this educational environment provides comprehensive academic knowledge similar to and above that of standard schooling practices but also provides the kind of environment where students discover the world and gain insights about him or herself and understands society from an integral, global and interconnected perspective.