The Director of Research at the Institute of Child Development at the University of Minnesota, Dr. Carlson is a leading researcher on the development of executive function in children. Executive function refers to a set of higher level cognitive skills needed to plan and problem-solve. These skills include the ability to keep information in mind, pay attention and think from multiple points of view.
In her talk, Dr. Carlson explored how executive function is closely linked to school readiness, academic achievement and social well-being, as well as touched on strategies that educators and parents can use to improve these critical skills in young children and adolescents.
Creativity is valued today more than ever. Our rapidly changing, technology-driven economy requires a new generation of creative thinkers to innovate and solve increasingly complex problems. How then, can we nurture creativity in our children and students? Is creativity learned or innate? What attitudes do creative thinkers have that sets them apart? Join us as Professor Robert J. Sternberg, Ph.D. explores these questions and shares his latest research on the distinctive attitudes of creative people.
Increasing women’s participation in STEM fields has been a national topic that has led to changes in both education policy and business practices. Yet, research shows that some STEM fields reflect greater gender disparity than others: Women receive almost half of the bachelor’s degrees in biology, chemistry, and mathematics, but earn less than 20% of computer science, engineering and physics degrees.
In November 2014, we welcomed Walter Mischel, Ph.D., the world’s leading expert on self-control and a pioneering researcher on the implications of delayed gratification. Mischel’s groundbreaking marshmallow experiment, first conducted in the 1960s, has shown that the ability to delay gratification is critical for a successful life, predicting higher SAT scores, better social and cognitive functioning, a healthier lifestyle, and a greater sense of self-worth.
Design thinking is a human-centered approach to problem solving that requires critical thinking, communication, collaboration, innovation and creativity. Dr. Shelley Goldman, an educational anthropologist and professor at the Stanford Graduate School of Education, joined us to address why design thinking is an important tool for teaching and learning. She explored how design thinking pedagogy can be applied to core topics in areas such math and science and how to assess the impacts of this powerful approach to learning in the classroom.
Dr. Allison Master presented a research review on growth mindset, which helps children learn to love challenges and persist in the face of obstacles. She also presented her latest research on the importance of word choice in motivating children. Articles by Allison Master:
Sian Beilock is a psychology professor at The University of Chicago and one of the world’s leading experts on the brain science behind “choking under pressure” and the many brain and body factors influencing all types of performance: from test-taking to public speaking. Professor Beilock shared the research behind her book Choke: What the Secrets of the Brain Reveal About Getting It Right When You Have To.
Todd Rose and Kurt Fischer discussed two articles that they co-authored: "Webs of Skills: How Students Learn," and "Dynamic Systems Theory." Kurt Fischer led an international movement to connect biology and cognitive science to education and was the founding editor of the journal Mind, Brain and Education, recognized as the 2007 Best New Journal in the Social Sciences & Humanities by the Association of American Publishers' Professional & Scholarly Publishing Division.
At a time when globalization and technology are dramatically altering the world we live in, is education reform in the United States headed down the right path? Are schools emphasizing the knowledge and skills that students need in a global society or are they actually undermining their strengths by overemphasizing high stakes testing and standardization? Are education systems in China and other countries really as superior as some people claim?
Featuring Adele Diamond, Ph.D., Angela Duckworth, Ph.D., and Deborah J. Leong, Ph.D.
In this combined Speaker Series event, Adele Diamond presented on the Interrelations between Creativity and Executive Functions: Lessons from Psychology and Neuroscience for Cultivating Giftedness in Young People. Angela Duckworth presented Beyond Talent: The Role of Self-control in Achievement. Deborah Leong presented Tools of the Mind: The Vygotskian Approach to School Readiness and Social, Emotional, and Cognitive Control.
Featuring Mary Helen Immordino-Yang, Ed.D. and Rena Subotnik, Ph.D.
In our second Speaker Series event, the topic was Brains and Domains, featuring presentations and workshops with cognitive neuroscientist and educational psychologist Mary Helen Immordino-Yang and Director of the Center for Gifted Education Policy at the American Psychological Association Rena Subotnik. Many fascinating questions were explored: What does it take to fulfill potential beyond talent or luck, and how do we reconcile high achievement with emotional contentment? The forum gave our speakers the chance to fully define their theories, while also allowing for a meaningful dialogue among attendees.
Featuring Carol S. Dweck, Ph.D. and Allison Gopnik, Ph.D.
Our Speaker Series debuted in 2008, with a joint presentation by renowned psychologist/author Carol Dweck and leading cognitive scientist/author Allison Gopnik. Over 200 educators, parents and members of the community attended the event, which focused on the topic Cultivating Giftedness in Young Minds. Both speakers brought a wealth of compelling questions to the forefront including,"How can we use positive reinforcement and encouragement to move our children from fixed to growth mindsets?" and "How does play for children change over time and vary by age?"
Since 2008, we have been inviting cutting-edge researchers and behavioral scientists to Seattle to share their latest findings. Our free annual lectures are designed to bring researchers, educators and parents together for important conversations about how we educate children.
We hope these discussions will help researchers identify the ways that their findings translate into practice and illuminate new questions for them to examine. For parents and teachers, we hope these discussions help them better understand the science behind behavior and develop educational strategies in light of this research.
All Evergreen Speaker Series events are open to the public on a space-available basis.
To find out about future Speaker Series events, please join our mailing list by filling out the form below.
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The Evergreen School
15201 Meridian Avenue North
Shoreline, WA 98133
The Evergreen School is a private, Seattle-area school serving the needs of gifted students in preschool through 8th grade.