Keeping students focused can be difficult in a world filled with distractions -- which is why a renowned educator created a scientific solution to one of every teacher's biggest problems.
Why is it so hard to get students to pay attention? Conventional wisdom blames iPhones, insisting that access to technology has ruined students' ability to focus. The logical response is to ban electronics in class.
But acclaimed educator James M. Lang argues that this solution obscures a deeper problem: how we teach is often at odds with how students learn. Classrooms are designed to force students into long periods of intense focus, but emerging science reveals that the brain is wired for distraction. We learn best when able to actively seek and synthesize new information.
In Distracted, Lang rethinks the practice of teaching, revealing how educators can structure their classrooms less as distraction-free zones and more as environments where they can actively cultivate their students' attention.
Brimming with ideas and grounded in new research, Distracted offers an innovative plan for the most important lesson of all: how to learn.
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Distracted is a must-read for every classroom teacher. Lang makes a compelling argument that 'attention is an achievement' and that we should be cultivating 'attention renewal' rather than preventing distractions. He presents practical classroom activities for fostering curiosity and community -- with the research to back them up. Candid insights on effective laptop policies, inviting students into the conversation, and the role of assessments make Distracted an invaluable resource that will change how you -- and your students -- think about learning.
Pooja K. Agarwal, Ph.D., cognitive scientist and author of Powerful Teaching