Learning & the Brain 42: The Science of Character (LB42)

Organization: Learning & the Brain Foundation

Venue: The Westin Copley Place Boston

Location: Boston, Massachusetts, United States

Event Date/Time: Nov 13, 2015 / 1:00 pm - (EST) End Date/Time: Nov 15, 2015 / 3:00 pm - (EST)
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Description

The Science of Character: Using Brain Science to Promote Student Self-Regulation, Resilience and Respect

Neuroscience and psychological sciences research has found that “character strengths,” such as self-control, conscientiousness resilience, grit, empathy and social-emotional skills are linked to greater school, college, career and life success, higher test scores, less bullying and behavior problems and better social and cognitive functioning. Research has also discovered that we can use the brain’s neuroplasticity to train these skills, often called non-cognitive or soft skills, in students through instruction, video games and meditation. Discover the science behind these character strengths, why they lead to academic and life success and how educators can train these skills in students.

 

LEARNING OBJECTIVES

You will gain knowledge about:

  • The science of self-control for academic success
  • Using video games to train social, anti-bullying skills
  • Creating caring, respectful and moral children and teens
  • Strategies for self-regulation, grit and social-emotional learning
  • How meditation and mindsets increase self-control and resilience
  • Promoting moral, academic, civic and intellectual character strengths
  • Linking emotional self-regulation to reading, math and achievement
  • Creating healthy, safe school climates and positive teen development
  • Managing challenging classroom behaviors and online bullying
  • Enhancing empathy, compassion and gratitude in children
  • The effects of stress, trauma, abuse and poverty
  • Raising resilient children and young adults

“Measures of conscientiousness, self-control, grit and growth mindset were all positively correlated with attendance, behavior and test score gains.” - John D.E. Gabrieli, PhD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

 

Featured Speakers: Walter Mischel, PhD, Niven Professor of Humane Letters in Psychology, Columbia University; Author, The Marshmallow Test: Mastering Self-Control (2015); Co-Author, “Behavioral and Neural Correlates of Delay of Gratification 40 Years Later” (2011, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences) and “Predictive Cognitive Control from Preschool to Late Adolescence and Young Adulthood” (2006, Psychological Science)

Neal H. Mayerson, PhD, Clinical Psychologist; Chairman/Founder, VIA Institute on Character; President, Mayerson Foundation; Chairman, Mayerson Academy; Creator with Dr. Martin Seligman of the VIA Classification and VIA Survey of Character Strengths; Co-Author, “Through the Lens of Strength: A Framework for Educating the Heart” (2014, Journal of Positive Psychology)

Fumiko Hoeft, MD, PhD, Associate Professor of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry; Director of UCSF Hoeft Laboratory for Educational Neuroscience (brainLENS.org), University of California, San Francisco; Researcher on the understanding brain development and brain mechanisms of educationally relevant concepts such as SEL (e.g., mindset, grit, motivation, resilience and stereotype threat), creativity, learning and learning challenges (e.g., dyslexia and autism); Winner for the 2015 "Transforming Education through Neuroscience" from the Learning and the Brain Foundation and the International Mind Brain and Education Society (IMBES); Co-Author, “Utilizing Biopsychosocial and Strengths-based Approaches Within the Field of Child Health: What We Know and Where We Can Grow” (2015, New Directions for Child and Adolescent Development) and “White Matter Morphometric Changes Uniquely Predict Children's Reading Acquisition” (2014, Psychological Sciences)

Kenneth R. Ginsburg, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania; Author, Raising Kids to Thrive: Balancing Love With Expectations and Protection With Trust (2015) and Building Resilience in Children and Teens: Giving Kids Roots and Wings (2011); Co-Author, Less Stress, More Success (2006); Co-Editor, Reaching Teens: Strength-Based Communication Strategies to Build Resilience and Support Healthy (2014)

Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, PhD, Applied Developmental Psychologist; Professor, Human Development, Learning and Culture, Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology and Special Education, University of British Columbia; Co-Author, “Enhancing Cognitive and Social-Emotional Development through a Simple-to-administer Mindfulness-based School Program for Elementary School Children” (2015, Developmental Psychology), “Social-Emotional Competencies Make the Grade” (2014, Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology) and “Bullying and Morality” (2010, The International Handbook of School Bullying); Co-Editor, Mindfulness in Adolescence (2014)

Laurence Steinberg, PhD, Distinguished University Professor, Temple University; Author, Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence (2014) and You and Your Adolescent: The Essential Guide for Ages 10-25 (2011, Revised Edition); Co-Author, “Unpacking Self-Control” (2015, Child Developmental Perspective) and “Impact of Socio-Emotional Context, Brain Development, and Pubertal Maturation on Adolescent Decision-making” (2013, Hormones and Behavior)

 

Venue

10 Huntington Ave.
Boston
Massachusetts
United States
MORE INFO ON THIS VENUE

Organizations

Learning & the Brain Foundation

Conference Speakers

Joshua M. Aronson, PhD, Associate Professor of Applied Psychology, Steinhardt School of Culture, Education and Human Development, New York University; Co-Author, “Minding and Mending the Gap: Social Psychological Interventions to Reduce Educational Disparities” (2015, Contemporary Educational Psychology); Editor, Improving Academic Achievement (2002)

Roy F. Baumeister, PhD, Professor of Psychology, Florida State University; Co-Author, Willpower: Rediscovering the Greatest Human Strength (2012); Editor, Self-Esteem: The Puzzle of Low Self-Regard (2014); Co-Editor, Handbook of Self-Regulation: Research, Theory and Applications (2013, 2nd Edition); Co-Author, “A Meta-Analysis of How Trait Self-Control Relates to a Wide Range of Behaviors” (2012, Personality and Social Psychology)

Karen E. Bohlin, EdD, Head of Montrose School; Senior Scholar, Center for Character and Social Responsibility, School of Education, Boston University; Author, Teaching Character Education through Literature (2005); Co-Author, Happiness and Virtue Beyond East and West: Towards a New Global Responsibility (2012), Citizenship in Higher Education (2009) and Building Character in Schools: Practical Ways to Bring Moral Instruction to Life (2003)

Marc A. Brackett, PhD, Director, Center For Emotional Intelligence; Senior Research Scientist in Psychology; Faculty Fellow, Edward Zigler Center in Child Development and Social Policy, Yale University; Co-Creator of RULER; Co-Author, “Predicting School Success: Comparing Conscientiousness, Grit and Emotion Regulation Ability” (2014, Journal of Research in Personality)

Ivonne Chand O’Neal, PhD, Chief Research Officer, Creativity Testing Services; Former Director of Research and Evaluation, The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts; Author, “An Impact Evaluation of Arts-Integration Through the Changing Education Through the Arts (CETA) Program” (2014, JFK Center’s Research Study)

Jillian C. Darwish, EdD, President, Mayerson Academy, which is collaborating with VIA Character Institute to provide scientifically-based programs and tools for educators on character strengths; Former Vice President, KnowledgeWorks Foundation; developer of a peer-to-peer online learning community for teachers

David A. DeSteno, PhD, Professor; Department of Psychology; Director, Social Emotions Lab, Northeastern University; Editor-in-Chief, Emotion; Author, Emotional Success (2016, Forthcoming), The Truth About Trust (2014) and Out of Character (2013, Reprint Edition), The Kindness Cure (2015, The Atlantic). Co-Author: Gratitude and Prosocial Behavior: Helping When it Costs You (2006, Psychological Science), Meditation Increases Compassionate Responses to Suffering (2013, Psychological Science)

Elizabeth K. Englander, PhD, Founder/Director, Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center; Professor of Psychology, Bridgewater State University; Chair of the Cyberbullying Work Group at the Institute for Digital Media and Child Development; Author, Bullying and Cyberbullying: What Every Educator Needs to Know (2013) and Understanding Violence (2007)

Lisa Flook, PhD Scientist, Center for Investigating Healthy Minds and Waisman Laboratory for Brain Imaging and Behavior, University of Wisconsin-Madison; Co-Author, “Promoting Prosocial Behavior and Self-Regulatory Skills in Preschool Children Through a Mindfulness-Based Kindness Curriculum” (2014, Developmental Psychology)

Gerald Fussell, PhD, District Principal, Innovation and Technology, Comox Valley School District in British Columbia, Canada; built a district-wide resilience program based on Kenneth Ginsberg's work; Blogger for Why Not

Brian M. Galla, PhD, Assistant Professor, School of Education; Research Scientist, Learning Research and Development Center, University of Pennsylvania; Co-Author with Angela Duckworth, "More Than Resisting Temptation: Beneficial Habits Mediate the Relationship Between Self-Control and Positive Life Outcomes" (2015, APA) and "The Academic Diligence Task (ADT): Assessing Individual Differences in Effort on Tedious but Important Schoolwork" (2014, Contemporary Educational Psychology)

Hunter Gehlbach, PhD, Associate Professor, The Gevirtz Graduate School of Education, University of California, Santa Barbara; Former Associate Professor of Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education; Former Principal Investigator of the NSF-funded Project: Enhancing Immersive Social Perspective Talking and Perceived Virtual (Reality) Similarity to Enable Intelligent Social Relationships; Co-Author, “Many Ways to Walk a Mile in Another's Moccasins: Type of Social Perspective Taking and its Effect on Negotiation Outcomes” (2014, Computers in Human Behavior)

Jay N. Giedd, MD, Director, Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry; School of Medicine, University of California, San Diego; Co-Author, “Developmental Changes in the Structure of the Social Brain in Late Childhood and Adolescence” (2014, Social Cognitive and Affective Neuroscience)

Kenneth R. Ginsburg, MD, Professor of Pediatrics, The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia and the Perelman School of Medicine, University of Pennsylvania; Author, Raising Kids to Thrive: Balancing Love With Expectations and Protection With Trust (2015) and Building Resilience in Children and Teens: Giving Kids Roots and Wings (2011); Co-Author, Less Stress, More Success (2006); Co-Editor, Reaching Teens: Strength-Based Communication Strategies to Build Resilience and Support Healthy (2014)

Sam J. Goldstein, PhD; Assistant Clinical Instructor, Department of Psychiatry, University of Utah School of Medicine; Clinical Director, Neurology, Learning and Behavior Center; Co-Author, Learning Disabilities and Challenging Behaviors (2015, 3rd Edition) and Raising a Self-Disciplined Child (2009)

Rick Hanson, PhD, Senior Fellow, Greater Good Science Center, University of California, Berkeley; Founder, Wellspring Institute for Neuroscience and Contemplative Wisdom; Author, Hardwiring Happiness: The New Brain Science of Contentment, Calm and Confidence (2013) and Buddha's Brain: The Practical Neuroscience of Happiness, Love and Wisdom (2009)

Fumiko Hoeft, MD, PhD, Director, Laboratory of Educational NeuroScience (BrainLENS); Associate Professor, University of California, San Francisco School of Medicine; Recipient of the 2015 Transforming Education through Neuroscience Award from Learning & the Brain Foundation; Co-Author, “White Matter Morphometric Changes Uniquely Predict Children's Reading Acquisition” (2014, Psychological Sciences)

Andrea M. Hussong, PhD, Professor of Psychology; Director, Center for Developmental Science; Principal Investigator, “Raising Grateful Children” Project, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill; Author, “How Parents Can Foster Gratitude in Kids” (2014, Greater Good Science Center)

Stephanie M. Jones, PhD, Associate Professor in Human Development and Urban Education Advancement; Co-Director, “Making Caring Common” Initiative; Co-Project Director, “Rigorous and Regulated Learning Environments”, Harvard Graduate School of Education; Co-Author, “Social and Emotional Learning in Schools: From Programs to Strategies” (2012, Social Policy Report)

Jason Kahn, PhD, Research Associate, Boston Children’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School; Founder and CEO, Neuro*motion, Inc.; Co-Author, “RAGE-Control: A Game to Build Emotional Strength” (2013, Games for Health Journal) and “Videogame Assisted Emotional Regulation Training” (2011, Clinical Social Work Journal)

Leslie E. Laud, EdD, Founding Director, thinkSRSD; Lecturer, Reading Specialist Program, Massachusetts General Hospital, Harvard Medical School; Co-Author, How Good Teachers Nurture Character (2000)

Valerie Maholmes, PhD, Chief, Pediatric Trauma and Critical Illness Branch; Director, Child and Family Processes/Child Maltreatment and Violence Research Program in the Child Development and Behavior Branch, Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD), National Institutes of Health; Co-Chair, National Institutes of Health Child Abuse and Neglect Working Group; Author, Fostering Resilience and Well-being in Children and Families in Poverty (2014); Co-Editor, The Oxford Handbook of Poverty and Child Development (2012)

Neal H. Mayerson, PhD, Clinical Psychologist; Chairman/Founder, VIA Institute on Character; President, Mayerson Foundation; Chairman, Mayerson Academy; Creator with Dr. Martin Seligman of the VIA Classification and VIA Survey of Character Strengths; Co-Author, “Through the Lens of Strength: A Framework for Educating the Heart” (2014, Journal of Positive Psychology)

Jessica Minahan, MEd, BCBA, Adjunct Professor, Boston University; National Consultant to Schools; Author, The Behavior Code Companion: Strategies, Tools and Interventions for Supporting Students With Anxiety-Related or Oppositional Behaviors (2014); Co-Author, The Behavior Code: A Practical Guide to Understanding and Teaching the Most Challenging Students (2012)

Walter Mischel, PhD, Niven Professor of Humane Letters in Psychology, Columbia University; Author, The Marshmallow Test: Mastering Self-Control (2015); Co-Author, “Behavioral and Neural Correlates of Delay of Gratification 40 Years Later” (2011, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences) and “Predictive Cognitive Control from Preschool to Late Adolescence and Young Adulthood” (2006, Psychological Science)

Darcia F. Narvaez, PhD, Professor of Psychology, University of Notre Dame; Co-Director, "The Self, Motivation and Virtue" Project by the Templeton Trust; Blogger for “Moral Landscapes,” Psychology Today; Editor, Journal of Moral Education; Author, Neurobiology and the Development of Human Morality (2014), Personality, Identity and Character (2009) and “Teaching for Character: Three Strategies for Teacher Education” (2013, The Moral Work of Teaching); Co-Editor, Handbook of Moral and Character Education (2014, 2nd Edition)

Gil G. Noam, EdD, PhD, Founder/Director, Program in Education, Afterschool & Resiliency, Harvard University; Associate Professor, Harvard Medical School and McLean Hospital; Editor-in-chief, New Directions in Youth Development Journal

Jeff Orkin, PhD, Artificial Intelligence Researcher; Game Developer; Co-Founder/CTO, Giant Otter Technologies; Former Research Assistant, MIT Media Lab, Massachusetts Institute of Technology; Co-Developer of SchoolLife, a 3-D virtual school environment and artificial intelligence game to teach students social-emotional and anti-bullying skills, and The Restaurant Game, a simulation game designed to teach social skills

Greg Richards, PhD, Founder/Director, Middle Grades Ethic Project; Author, Ethics for Young Adults (2014) and "Measuring the Effect of Parent Involvement in a Middle School Ethics Curriculum on Parent-Adolescent Communication" (2010, Doctoral Dissertation)

Sara E. Rimm-Kaufman, PhD, Professor of Education; Director, Social Development Lab, Center for the Advanced Study of Teaching and Learning, Curry School of Education, University of Virginia. Rimm-Kaufman has spent the last two decades conducting research on elementary school classrooms with the goal of developing roadmaps for administrators and teachers making decisions for teachers and children.

Vanessa Rodriguez, MA, Instructor in Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education; Program Officer, International Teaching Brain Consortium and the International Mind Brain and Education Society; Author, The Teaching Brain: The Evolutionary Trait at the Heart of Education (2014); Co-Author, “Teachers’ Awareness of the Learner-Teacher Interaction: Preliminary Communication of a Study Investigating The Teaching Brain” (2013, Mind, Brain and Education Journal)

Kimberly Schonert-Reichl, PhD, Applied Developmental Psychologist; Professor, Human Development, Learning and Culture, Department of Educational and Counseling Psychology and Special Education, University of British Columbia; Co-Author, “Enhancing Cognitive and Social-Emotional Development through a Simple-to-administer Mindfulness-based School Program for Elementary School Children” (2015, Developmental Psychology), “Social-Emotional Competencies Make the Grade” (2014, Journal of Applied Developmental Psychology) and “Bullying and Morality” (2010, The International Handbook of School Bullying); Co-Editor, Mindfulness in Adolescence (2014)

Scott C. Seider, EdD, Associate Professor of Education, School of Education, Boston University; Adjunct Lecturer on Education, Harvard Graduate School of Education; Author, Character Compass: How Powerful School Culture Can Point Students Toward Success (2012)

Leah H. Somerville, PhD, Assistant Professor of Psychology; Director, Affective Neuroscience & Development Laboratory; Faculty, Center for Brain Science, Harvard University; Co-Author, “Neural Correlates of Expected Risks and Returns in Risky Choice Across Development” (2015, The Journal of Neuroscience)

Laurence Steinberg, PhD, Distinguished University Professor, Temple University; Author, Age of Opportunity: Lessons from the New Science of Adolescence (2014) and You and Your Adolescent: The Essential Guide for Ages 10-25 (2011, Revised Edition); Co-Author, “Unpacking Self-Control” (2015, Child Developmental Perspective) and “Impact of Socio-Emotional Context, Brain Development, and Pubertal Maturation on Adolescent Decision-making” (2013, Hormones and Behavior)

Constance Steinkuehler, PhD, Associate Professor in Digital Media, University of Wisconsin–Madison; Co-Director, Games+Learning+Society (GSL) Center at the Wisconsin Institute of Discovery; Executive Director, Higher Education Videogames Alliance; Co-Director with Neuroscientist Richard Davidson on a project to develop a video game to train and measure pro-social behaviors in the brain; Co-Author, “Educational Games and Outcomes” (2015, The International Encyclopedia of Digital Communication and Society); Co-Editor, Games, Learning and Society: Learning and Meaning in the Digital Age (2012)

Sara Truebridge, EdD, Educational Consultant; Researcher on resilience; Consultant to the film, Race to Nowhere (2010); Author, Resilience Begins with Beliefs: Building on Student Strengths for Success in School (2013)

Emily C. Weinstein, MEd, Doctoral Candidate, Human Development and Education; Teaching Fellow, Harvard Graduate School of Education; Former Research Assistant for Developing Minds and Digital Media projects at Project Zero; Co-Author, “Digital Stress: Adolescents' Personal Accounts” (2014, New Media & Society)

Richard Weissbourd, EdD, Faculty Director, Human Development and Psychology Program; Co-Director, “Making Caring Common” Project and “Caring Schools” Initiative, Harvard Graduate School of Education; Lecturer, John F. Kennedy School of Government, Harvard University; Author, The Parents We Mean To Be (2010); Co-Author, “Educators' Social and Emotional Skills Vital to Learning” (2013, Phi Delta Kappa)

Additional Information

CO-SPONSORS
  • Athinoula A. Martinos Imaging Center, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • Center for Emotional Intelligence, Yale University
  • Dana Alliance for Brain Initiatives, The Dana Foundation
  • Comer School Development Program, Yale University School of Medicine
  • Mind, Brain & Education Program, Harvard Graduate School of Education
  • Neuroscience Research Institute, University of California, Santa Barbara
  • School of Education, Johns Hopkins University
  • The John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts
  • LEARNING & the BRAIN® Foundation

 

Professional Development Credit

Certificates of attendance are suitable for use to meet professional development requirements for educators and clinicians. Attendees can earn 16 contact hours of credit by attending the three-day conference. An additional 4 hours of credit are available for educators and some clinicians for attending pre-conference workshops for a total of 20 hours. The conference is 16 contact hours = 1.60 CEU or CEs.

Graduate level credit is also available.