"Brain research tells us that when the fun stops, learning often stops too." – Judy Willis
"A 32-Year Longitudinal Study of Child and Adolescent Pathways to Well-Being in Adulthood"
Craig A. Olsson, Rob McGee, Shyamala Nada-Raja and Sheila M. Williams, Journal of Happiness Studies, 2012
"Adolescent social connectedness was a better predictor of adult well-being than academic achievement ... Indicators of well-being in adulthood appear to be better explained by social connection rather than academic competencies pathways. Implications for promoting longer term well-being during the school years are discussed."
World Happiness Report
Commissioned for the United Nations Conference on Happiness 4/2/12.
JEFFREY D. SACHS (Director, The Earth Institute, Columbia University), JOHN F. HELLIWELL (Professor Emeritus of Economics, University of British Columbia and Arthur J.E. Child Foundation Fellow of the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) ), RICHARD LAYARD (Director, Well-being Programme, Centre for Economic Performance, London School of Economics)
"'Sustainable Development' is the term given to the combination of human well-being, social inclusion, and environmental sustainability. We can say that the quest for happiness is intimately linked to the quest for sustainable development."
Gross National Happiness Index
Bhutan's new metric for domestic success
"The concept of GNH has often been explained by its four pillars: good governance, sustainable socio-economic development, cultural preservation, and environmental conservation. Lately the four pillars have been further classified into nine domains in order to create widespread understanding of GNH and to reflect the holistic range of GNH values. The nine domains are: psychological wellbeing, health, education, time use, cultural diversity and resilience, good governance, community vitality, ecological diversity and resilience, and living standards."
United Nations Resolution 65/309
"Happiness: towards a holistic approach to development"
TED Talk by Shawn Achor: The Happiness Advantage-Research Linking Happiness and Success
Check out this great (and entertaining) TED talk that supports the importance of joyful learning.
Part of the Authentic Happiness initiative at UPenn. This TED talk is by Martin Seligman, the leader of that initiative.
"The Benefits of Frequent Positive Affect: Does Happiness Lead to Success?"
Sonja Lyubomirsky, Laura King, Ed Diener; Psychological Bulletin, 2005, Vol. 131, No. 6, 803– 855"Numerous studies show that happy individuals are successful across multiple life domains, including marriage, friendship, income, work performance, and health. The authors suggest ... that the happiness–success link exists not only because success makes people happy, but also because positive affect engenders success.'
Positive Life Outcomes Linked With School Happiness
Stephen Gibbons, Olmo Silva; Economics of Education Review; Apr2011, Vol. 30 Issue 2, p312-331
"Child wellbeing at school and enjoyment of the learning environment are important economic outcomes, in particular because a growing body of research shows they are strongly linked to later educational attainments and labour market success."
"Student Motivation: An Overlooked Piece of School Reform"
Alexandra Usher and Nancy Kober, Center on Education Policy, May 22, 2012
"... offering a more in-depth look at specific themes surrounding student engagement, including: why motivation is important and how it might be defined and measured; whether rewarding students can result in higher motivation; whether students can be motivated by goal-setting; the role of parental involvement, family background, and culture; strategies schools might use to motivate students; and nontraditional approaches to motivating otherwise unenthusiastic students."
The neuro-science of joyful learning
"The Neuroscience of Joyful Education"
Judy Willis, ASCD Educational Leadership, Summer 2007, Volume 64
"The truth is that when we scrub joy and comfort from the classroom, we distance our students from effective information processing and long-term memory storage. Instead of taking pleasure from learning, students become bored, anxious, and anything but engaged. They ultimately learn to feel bad about school and lose the joy they once felt."
Joy of Learning at primary school
Current research out of Finland (Early Childhood Development and Care) highlights ten factors that contribute to joyful learning. These include play, freedom of choice, and relevance.
"Cooperative Learning is a Brain Turn-On"
Judy Willis, Middle School Journal-March 2007 Volume 38 • Number 4 • Pages 4-13
"The brain scans of subjects learning in this type of supportive and social learning situation show facilitated passage of information from the intake areas into the memory storage regions of the brain. This is consistent with the original cognitive psychology research and theories of Krashen (1982) about the affective filter—that learning associated with positive emotion is retained longer and visa versa."
Brain Based Learning
"Brain-based Pedagogy in Today’s Diverse Classrooms: A Perfect Fit—But Be Careful!"
Linda McCall, Delta Kappa Gamma Bulletin, Spring 2012
"In order to lower stress and improve cognition, Sylwester (2003, 2010) recommended a nurturing, democratic classroom and integrated curricula that reflect the connectivity between the brain and the environment. Jensen (2008, 2010)
suggested exercise, drama, and celebrations to decrease stress and increase learning"
The link between school start times and student achievement
"Do Schools Begin Too Early?"
Finley Edwards, Education Next, Summer 2012 / VOL. 12, NO. 3
"Of course, increased sleep is not the only possible reason later-starting middle-school students have higher test scores. Students in early-starting schools could be more likely to skip breakfast. Because they also get out of school earlier, they could spend more (or less) time playing sports, watching television, or doing homework. They could be more likely to be absent, tardy, or have behavioral problems in school."
GSV Education Sector Factbook 2012
"Globally, 570 million children are enrolled in school."
How instruction kills creativity
"The double-edged sword of pedagogy: Instruction limits spontaneous exploration and discovery"
Elizabeth Bonawitz, Patrick Shafto, Hyowon Gweon, Noah D. Goodman, Elizabeth Spelke, Laura Schulz; Cognition, Volume 120, Issue 3, September 2011, Pages 322–330
"... pedagogy promotes efficient learning but at a cost: children are less likely to perform potentially irrelevant actions but also less likely to discover novel information."
"Children’s imitation of causal action sequences is influenced by statistical and pedagogical evidence"
Daphna Buchsbaum, Alison Gopnik, Thomas L. Griffiths, Patrick Shafto; Cognition, Volume 120, Issue 3, September 2011, Pages 331–340
"Children are ubiquitous imitators, but how do they decide which actions to imitate?"
New K-12 Blended Learning Taxonomy
Heather Staker and Michael B. Horn, InnoSight Institute
"As blended learning continues to expand across the K-12 sector, definitions are important to help people talk about the new phenomena. This white paper refines our previous work in helping to create a shared language for the emerging field so that innovators can build upon each other’s ideas, rather than talk past each other."