The Center for Transformative Teaching & Learning is a leader in the field of Mind, Brain, and Education Science Research, and helps educators around the world maximize their classroom effectiveness so that students can achieve their highest potential.
Every summer, the CTTL invites PK-12 educators from around the United States to its summer Science of Teaching and School Leadership Academy, an intensive, week-long bootcamp in which educators get a close look into cutting-edge educational neuroscience research and practices. In its first two years, the Academy hosted 350 teachers from 20 states and 7 countries representing public, charter, private, state, international and home schools.
“Our goal is to get every K-12 educator in the world infusing their classrooms with validated educational neuroscience research,” explains CTTL director and co-author of Neuroteach: Brain Science and the Future of Education, Glenn Whitman. “But with our current setup, we can realistically only reach a few hundred K-12 educators every year. That’s when we found Talented in Austin, Texas while attending SXSWedu.”
Talented worked with CTTL to develop a pilot for Neuroteach: Global, the first in a series of 28 micro-courses training PK-12 educators in using research-informed strategies in their classrooms. This pilot micro-course was made possible by the generosity of the Chan Zuckerberg Initiative and featured two key aspects:
- interactive story adventures in which a learner’s mission is to run a fictional classroom with research-informed, educational neuroscience practices; and
- real-world activities in which a learner implements educational neuroscience teaching practices into their own real-life classroom, and receives personalized feedback and support from their educational neuroscience coach at CTTL.
This micro-course has since been piloted in multiple phases, and has included PK-12 educators from Iowa, Minnesota and Maryland. After each phase, Talented and the CTTL made it a priority to improve the micro-course experience based on the feedback provided by learners.
- 91% of learners reported a better understanding of educational neuroscience and its application in the classroom.
- 70% of learners reported immediately using educational neuroscience practices in their own K-12 classrooms.
- Pilot participants earned rewards for the Limuru Township Primary School in Limuru, Kenya, including 15 copies of Neuroteach: Brain Science and the Future of Education, 2 hours of virtual workshops, and 50 licenses for a future Neuroteach: Global micro-course.
Based on the success of the pilot, CTTL plans to build Neuroteach: Global (Level I) with twelve additional micro-courses in the Neuroteach: Global series so that CTTL’s in-person programming and publications can be experienced by PK-12 educators around the world.
“We’re very excited for what’s yet to come,” says Whitman. “We at the CTTL feel like we have developed the right partnerships that will allow us to fundamentally change education by leveraging technology to help teachers and school leaders know more about how the brain learns, changes and thrives in order to help students globally achieve their highest potential.”