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Psychologists Encourage Doodling In The Classroom - Especially In Science Class!

 

Google has a yearly doodling competition for kids ages K - 12Google has a yearly doodling competition for kids ages K - 12Google encourages doodling for kids; why not science teachers?  Think it's crazy for teachers to encourage students to doodle while in class? Well, there seems to be a method for this madness and educational researchers from three Australian universities have shared their studies in the August 26, 2011 journal Science.

Psychology professor Shaaron Ainsworth from the University of Nottingham, and education professors Vaughan Prain from La Trobe University and Russell Tyler from Deakin University, piggy-backed their theory onto evidence provided by evidence reported in 2009, that college students who doodle during routine tasks have improved memory recall over those who do not.  That study posed that the most likely reason was that doodling prevented the students from daydreaming.

Doodle anyone?: image via io9.comDoodle anyone?: image via io9.comAinsworth and her colleagues noted that science, in particular, depends on images, maps, and graphs to provide explanation of its concepts.  Therefore, if drawing could be encouraged during lectures and readings, students would not only remember more, but perhaps become more interested in science. 

Their theory was substantiated by the results of a study, in which science students were encouraged to read and then draw what they learned from the reading.  Students were encouraged to be creative and to enjoy themselves during the drawing activity.  In fact, the students who drew what they read reported having fun and they were more inspired by what they read.

Ainsworth and colleagues propose that a 'game- like' atmosphere to learning may do more than encourage fun, but actually spark an interest in science.... or other subjects, for that matter. 

Just think.  If you were back in school doodling what you learned, you may have chosen an entirely different career.

 

msnbc.com