Brain Gym?

Ben Goldacre (Guardian bad science, 06mr18) thinks Brain Gym exercises do pupils no favours

I’ve seen the 12,000 Google hits for Brain Gym on UK government web pages. Now I need field reports

telling stories about fairies and monsters is fine, but lying to children about science is wrong. Children are predisposed to learn about the world from adults, and especially from teachers. Children listen to what you tell them: that’s the point of being a child, that’s the reason why you don’t come out fully-formed, speaking English with a favourite album.

It is one thing to teach a fiction as an approximation to a truth in an effort to lend insight. It is another to teach a fiction as is. As we learn, what we know is refined and the models we use to understand our world are modified, enhanced, or replaced by better models. ‘Brain Gym’ has such a nice monicker for an educational program that it should raise a skeptics’ interest right off the bat. Goldacre points out that a proper skepticism should raise questions about is propriety in our children’s education as well.

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