In a world in which technology gets blamed for our fatness, it is a great time to remember that we are an incredible species who want to be efficient as well as, well, uh, lazy. Smart swimmers stretch their bodies and pull the water right underneath them which makes them faster but they are expending less energy. So why, as educators, do we balk when students cheat. They want the highest grade by expending the least amount of energy. perhaps if we change the focus from grade, then they will find a more efficient way to solve a problem that matters.
One that we need to consider is movement in schools. A five-minute passing time every hour is great, but it isn’t the same as expending energy, moving blood, and thereby removing toxins from the body. This function is what John Medina in his book Brain Rules, introduces as essential for the longevity of our brain function. It is one way to keep us on the path to aging like Frank Lloyd Wright, who designed the Guggenehiem when he was 90 or sad, passive people who convinced themselves when they were 60 that it was too late for them. Medina proves that it is never too late nor too early to work the brain.
There are great ideas for businesses to offer treadmill desks or bicycle desks, but what about in schools? Perhaps we could put our students on designing the perfect classroom that offers movement for all, but more importantly for our kinesthetic learners who so often are left out of the learning not because they aren’t smart enough but because we haven’t designed a space that is conducive for their style of learning.