Archive for Neuroscience

Sense and Nonsense About Video Game Addiction

Popular media are full of scare headlines and articles about harmful effects of video gaming. But, what have researchers actually found? Is gaming really "Digital Heroin"?

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Risky Play: Why Children Love It and Need It

Children love to play with great heights, rapid speeds, dangerous tools, dangerous elements (e.g. fire), chasing and fighting, and getting lost (or nearly so). Why has the drive for such play evolved? What happens when children are deprived of such play? How dangerous, really, is such play? How does the danger compare with the danger of adult-directed sports?

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Risky Play: Why Children Love It and Need It

Children love to play with great heights, rapid speeds, dangerous tools, dangerous elements (e.g. fire), chasing and fighting, and getting lost (or nearly so). Why has the drive for such play evolved? What happens when children are deprived of such play? How dangerous, really, is such play? How does the danger compare with the danger of adult-directed sports?

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The Reading Wars: Why Natural Learning Fails in Classrooms

The "Reading Wars," the battles between those who favor phonics and those who favor whole-word or whole-language instruction of reading, have been declared to be over. The data clearly favor the early and explicit teaching of phonics. But when children learn to read out of school, on their own initiative, they do so with little attention to phonics. Why this difference?

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$100m to Know Why NFLers Die Young? Here’s Why, For Free

Just days before Super Bowl XLVII, the NFL announced it is giving Harvard University a hundred million dollars to find out why professional football players die about 20 years younger than other men. Hey, I could have answered that question for half as much. In fact, here I'll do it for free.

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The “ADHD Personality”: Its Cognitive, Biological, and Evolutionary Foundations

The brains of people diagnosed with ADHD are no doubt different from those of other people, but that doesn't make ADHD a "disorder." ADHD (except in extreme cases) is only a disorder to the degree that we, as a society, fail to tolerate impulsiveness and fail to provide environmental conditions in which people with widely differing personality characteristics can make best use of their strengths and learn how to compensate for their weaknesses.

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Pushing Competition and Damaging Health: Making Play Offensive

If American football were a food additive or a drug, it would be banned by the FDA. Or, if financial interests prevented its banning, its package would at least carry a surgeon general's warning: Football causes brain damage. The evidence that football causes brain damage is now indisputable. But the deleterious effects of our strong focus on winning go beyond football and brain damage. The compulsioin to win, in general, may be bad for our health.

Primary Topic:  Parenting

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Risky Play: Why Children Love It and Need It

Children love to play with great heights, rapid speeds, dangerous tools, dangerous elements (e.g. fire), chasing and fighting, and getting lost (or nearly so). Why has the drive for such play evolved? What happens when children are deprived of such play? How dangerous, really, is such play? How does the danger compare with the danger of adult-directed sports?

Comments off

The Reading Wars: Why Natural Learning Fails in Classrooms

The "Reading Wars," the battles between those who favor phonics and those who favor whole-word or whole-language instruction of reading, have been declared to be over. The data clearly favor the early and explicit teaching of phonics. But when children learn to read out of school, on their own initiative, they do so with little attention to phonics. Why this difference?

Comments off

$100m to Know Why NFLers Die Young? Here’s Why, For Free

Just days before Super Bowl XLVII, the NFL announced it is giving Harvard University a hundred million dollars to find out why professional football players die about 20 years younger than other men. Hey, I could have answered that question for half as much. In fact, here I'll do it for free.

Comments off