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Changing the Learning Conversation to Prepare Students for a World We Can’t Imagine

FRIDAY | APRIL 3, 2020

1:30 PM - 2:30 PM

Room: Rock Creek

Today’s students come to school with a variety of experiences that impact their learning success. Among those experiences is consideration that our K-12 students are learners who are a natural part of both the digital and the ‘real’ world. They have grown up with instantaneous access to the internet through a variety of technologies and software and are social media natives. Across the country, educators are changing the learning experience conversation from teacher-led broad coverage of academic content and associated annual assessments to a focus on developing engaged students who enjoy learning and who know how to learn. Of critical importance are solutions that emphasize authentic student engagement. Emerging neuroscience research informs us on how the brain learns and how the brain experiences the environment. Using this knowledge, we can design experiential, multi-sensory learning and spaces that can lead to academic and social success for all students. This conversation opens the exploration of innovative thinking about learning ecosystems, where learning experiences are rigorous, authentic, and collaborative, and incorporate the concept that spaces have memory to help students learn more deeply.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Understand how interactive, learner-centered experiences motivate students and how the design of learning spaces shapes social relations, enabling healthy social interactions essential for active learning.
  2. Consider how an enriched environment has a direct influence on student emotional well-being, feelings of safety, and activity within a space, and how visual access to nature throughout the school reduces fear and stress and nourishes user well-being.
  3. Become aware of how user responses to the built environment stimulate brain function, including how patterns and shapes matter in promoting feelings of happiness and comfort.
  4. Gain knowledge of key brain systems involved in learning and memory and the associated relationship between environmental, social, and individual factors of design, with attention to fostering movement, enhancing sensory awareness, and the use of edges.


Dr. Page Dettmann, Ph.D., ALEP

Chief Education Evangelist
MeTEOR Education


March 18-20, 2021   Washington, D.C.

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