Whole Brain Learning Online

Course Outline

Course Description

The purpose of this course is to provide teachers with the brain-based tools and understanding necessary to assist students in reaching their full potential for test-taking, increasing overall focus, enhancing reading and math skills, improving general study skill techniques, and building self-confidence in today's classrooms. Teachers will become familiar with the brain's developmental stages and how they affect learning and behavior. Focus will be given to how the body and brain are integrated and students will be introduced to the physical components of learning. Teachers will be presented with specific movements that can assist with balancing the vestibular system in the brain and the knowledge of how these movements can be easily assimilated into the lessons as part of the learning process and the overall school day.

The course will describe in detail the states of learning, stress at school, conscious vs. implicit learning, and how to manage a creative and calm classroom along with the means to incorporate these ideas into everyday routines. The format will also allow and encourage professional development and creative thinking among class members using the resources and prompts provided. This course has been designed for education professionals to rediscover the joy of teaching and for students to rediscover the joy of learning.

The course is set up for the instructors to provide a wide variety of role-play opportunities and modeling the students to actively experience and be a part of the process of whole-brain learning. The skills to be acquired are specific and target movements that integrate parts of the brain for optimum function and retention, and applications for a series of brain-based learning techniques (i.e. Pulse Learning).

The definition of education has its roots in the Latin word Educare, which means "to draw out." A significant portion of this class will be taught involving the Socratic (Inquiry) Method of using questions to create avenues for individual connection to the material to set up links for personalized learning, along with co-creative opportunities for students to play out real-life scenarios.

Curriculum Design & Time Requirements

Whole Brain Learning is a 13 week 3 credit graduate level or sixty hour professional development course taught online. Modules 1 through 8 will be completed week by week. Modules 9 and 10 will be completed over a five-week period so students will have the opportunity to complete the final integration project.

Hardware & Computer Skill Requirements

Students may use either a Macintosh computer or a PC with Windows 2000 or higher. Students should possess basic word processing skills and have internet access with an active e-mail account. Students also are expected to have a basic knowledge of how to use a Web browser, such as Microsoft Internet Explorer, Safari, Mozilla Firefox etc.

Course Materials

Text: Brain Based Learning by Eric Jensen. This book is a key resource for educators interested in putting the latest cutting edge neuroscience research into action in their classrooms. The author weaves all the latest discoveries into something immediate, specific, and easy to implement.

Session Outline

Session 1: Basic Structure to Whole Brain Learning
  1. Introduction/Pre-assessment: Purpose of the course/Goals and objectives of teachers
  2. Introduction to brain-based learning
  3. Introduction to parts and functions of the Triune Brain
  4. Introduction of movements for focus
  5. Developmental stages from conception to age 21+
  6. The Vestibular System
  7. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 2: Right and Left Hemisphere Function
  1. Review Session I
  2. Characteristics of hemispheric dominance
  3. How to assess your students hemispheric functionality
  4. What hemispheric function means to your classroom
  5. How to teach to the whole brain
  6. Non-conscious learning
  7. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 3: The Physical Component
  1. Review Session 2
  2. The importance of movement
  3. Learning is child's play
  4. Why every BODY needs water for optimum brain function
  5. Chemicals and reactions in the body
  6. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 4: Specific Movements, Specific Results
  1. Review Session 3
  2. The genesis of the Movement movement
  3. Movements to enhance spelling
  4. Movements to enhance listening abilities
  5. Movements that keep the brain alert
  6. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 5: The How, When, Why, Where and What of Stress
  1. Review Session 4
  2. The phenomenon of stress/impact of threat
  3. The physical components of stress
  4. Emotional Stress
  5. Academic Stress
  6. Coping with stress in the classroom
  7. Methods for heading off the stress response
  8. Reflective activities, assignments
  9. *This cursory review of stress is expanded upon and covered in an extensive course on stress offered by TEI.

Session 6: Bonding and the Importance of Routines
  1. Review Session 6
  2. Routines in our lives
  3. Classroom routines
  4. Community bonding
  5. Bonding and attachment
  6. Bonding rituals
  7. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 7: Emotional Intelligence and Discipline
  1. Review Session 7
  2. What is emotional intelligence?
  3. Feelings and emotions are not the same
  4. Emotions and the learning process
  5. Putting emotions into words and gestures
  6. Fear and discipline are incompatible
  7. Conflict
  8. Discipline strategies
  9. The journey to self-control
  10. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 8: Motivation, Making Meaning and Rewards
  1. Review Session 7
  2. Respect and reframing
  3. Motivation and demotivation
  4. Learned helplessness
  5. Meaning making
  6. Motivation and rewards
  7. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 9: Lesson Planning
  1. Review Session 8
  2. Brain-based lesson planning part I
  3. Brain-based lesson planning part II
  4. Review for final exam
  5. Reflective activities, assignments

Session 10: Final Exam/Evaluation
  1. Mind-Brain learning principles
  2. Brain metaphor exercise
  3. Final integration project
  4. Evaluation


  Assignment Points   Grading Scale  
  Talking Points  30      100 – 93 A
  Reading & Reviews  30       92 – 85 B
    Final Integration Project  40            
  Total Points  100    

Student Requirements

  1. Participation: Participation in all activities and dialogue with colleagues.
  2. Reading assignments: Students will complete all assigned reading assignments in the textbook and on the websites and research articles and answer questions and do reflective activities.
  3. Culminating Activity: Final Integration Project: Participants will create a all-encompassing daily lesson plan that creatively and appropriately incorporates the components of this course.

Student Academic Integrity

Participants guarantee that all academic class work is original. Any academic dishonesty or plagiarism (to take ideas, writings, etc. from another and offer them as one's own), is a violation of student academic behavior standards as outlined by our partnering colleges and universities and is subject to academic disciplinary action.


To register to take TEI's Whole Brain Learning Online course, go to the Course Registration page.