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Topic Archives: Cognitive Ability & IQ Testing

10 Learning Traits that Drive Academic Outcomes

June 21, 2019

The following is a brief summary of the learning traits that drive most academic learning. Everyone has their own unique combination of these traits, just as we all have our own unique fingerprint. It’s what makes each of us special but can also make learning confusing or challenging at times.   The 10 skills are organized in four key domains. Click on the links for more in-depth information on each skill. Complex Reasoning Complex reasoning is the ability to analyze information and solve complicated problems. When students use reasoning skills, they are thinking through ideas in a logical way to arrive at a conclusion. This is often referred to as “higher order thinking.” Don’t be surprised if you have a student who is strong in one area of… Read More

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Mindprint in Space: Results from the NASA Twins Study

May 3, 2019

What is the NASA Twins Study?  Identical twin astronauts, Mark and Scott Kelly, agreed to be studied for two years. NASA tracked changes to their genes, cognitive skills and physical and mental health to understand the impact of long duration space flight on the human body and brain. Mark stayed on Earth throughout. Scott spent a full year at the International Space Station. NASA monitored their functions before, during, and after Scott’s flight. What’s Mindprint Got to Do with It? Mindprint’s research partners at Penn Medicine’s Brain Behavior Lab provided the cognitive assessment for the NASA Twins Study. Yes, it’s the same assessment Mindprint makes available to students around the world to understand their cognitive development. NASA describes the assessment as “a much-needed practical, yet comprehensive cognitive… Read More

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Metacognition & Problem Solving

April 8, 2019

Successful learners use metacognition to facilitate their problem solving. This is one of the key findings of the National Academy of Sciences’ synthesis of decades of research on the science of learning explained in How People Learn: Mind, Brain, Experience and School Below we explain metacognition and provide the vocabulary to teach it. In part two of this series we will focus on strategy selection. If you’d like to try our full metacognition approach, please contact us here. Start with Cognition Cognition is how you learn. Depending on the topic, the context, personal experiences and genetics, each of us relies on different proportions of cognitive skills to understand and remember what we read, see or hear. We begin learning the moment we are born and we never stop…. Read More

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Attention Test: If You’re Not Paying Attention You’re Not Learning

March 30, 2019

Attention is the skill that enables students to follow through even when the work gets challenging or boring. Note: This is one of a 10 blog series on learning traits. Read about all 10 learning traits here. What is Attention? Attention is your ability to sustain focus, even for tasks or classes that you might not find interesting. Attention difficulties can affect students in all subjects and activities, but it is likely to have the biggest impact in classes that students don’t have intrinsic motivation. Why is Attention so important ? Quite simply, if you’re not paying attention to what the teacher is saying, you’re not learning. If your mind wanders when you read, you are likely missing out on critical information. If you lose focus while doing an assignment or a test, you are likely to make… Read More

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Visual Memory: The Hidden Gem

March 30, 2019

Visual memory is a key skill for STEM. Mathematicians, scientists and artists all rely heavily on this trait to be efficient in their work. Note: This is one of a 10 blog series on learning traits. Read about all 10 learning traits here. What is Visual Memory? Visual memory is the ability to remember what you see, including images, patterns, colors or what’s in “the mind’s eye”.  Why is it important? While you can definitely succeed in school without strong visual memory, your visual memory helps a lot. For elementary students, visual memory is key to memorizing math facts and sight words. As students progress in school, visual memory becomes increasingly important in subjects like geometry, algebra, and science, where you need to remember patterns, shapes and diagrams of multi-step processes. While it’s true that… Read More

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Verbal Memory: The Key to Learning Efficiency

March 30, 2019

Verbal memory is the skill that makes students most efficient in school and with homework, particularly in elementary school. Note: This is one of a 10 blog series on learning traits. Read about all 10 learning traits here. What is Verbal Memory? Verbal memory is the ability to remember what you read or hear. It includes your ability to hear or read a word, sentence or paragraph and then recall it when needed. Why is Verbal Memory so important? A lot of in-school learning involves reading, listening or studying and then recalling it when needed. Remembering vocabulary definitions, key details in a story, or the name of a species are all examples of verbal memory. While it’s true that technology is a good enabler so that students don’t need to memorize nearly as much… Read More

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Gifted Program Appeals Process using Mindprint

March 28, 2019

We are so glad you are considering Mindprint to help qualify for your school’s gifted program.  We are happy to assist you through the gifted program appeals process. Confirm your gifted coordinator will accept Mindprint. Every school has a gifted coordinator who manages the gifted program appeals process. If the coordinator is unfamiliar with Mindprint and would like more information about the Mindprint Assessment, please have the school contact us. They can also visit our website and you can share our research showing the validity and reliability. You might want to let them know that in addition to districts accepting Mindprint, Summer Institute for the Gifted (SIG) and Summer Academic and Honors Institute, among others, accept Mindprint as a qualified assessment. Decide who will pay for and administer Mindprint. Your… Read More

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Supporting Your “Average” Students

February 19, 2018

by Nancy Weinstein If you’re a teacher, you know there’s no such thing as average. The idea that students can be categorized as gifted, struggling, or “just average” is simplistic at best. The 10/10/80 statistic might be helpful for administrators, but it is useless in the classroom. In this blog inspired by the work of Dr. Todd Rose, we explore why there is no such thing as average and offer 8 strategies to manage learner diversity in every classroom. If Not Average, Then What? As Harvard  professor Dr. Todd Rose explains in his book, The End of Average, “Every one of these familiar notions of [average students or average brains] is a figment of a misguided scientific imagination.” Instead, most every student has, what Rose calls, a… Read More

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Can America’s ‘lost Einsteins’ be found more easily than we think?

February 4, 2018

Are we looking for the ‘lost Einsteins’ in the wrong places? Research suggests we should be looking at students’ spatial and flexible thinking skills, not math and science scores. Who are the ‘lost Einsteins’? Late last year the The Equality of Opportunity Project released a report concluding that the U.S. is losing out on as much as 400% of innovation potential by failing to effectively nurture under-represented minorities, i.e. Blacks, Latinos, and girls. The report states, “there are many ‘lost Einsteins’ – people who would have had high-impact inventions” but never do because they grow up in communities where math and science in general, and innovation specifically, isn’t fostered. Stories in the NY Times and The Atlantic among other outlets fueled the social media discourse about an educational system… Read More

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A Smarter Way to Improve Test Scores

January 19, 2017

Start by Knowing Your Child The most efficient way to improve test scores, whether it’s ACT, SAT orPARCC is to step back and really know your child. You probably won’t hear test prep tutors say, “All the strategies and practice in the world won’t help if you don’t know how your child learns.” But it’s true. If your child’s scores don’t match your reasonable expectations, it’s likely that there’s something in his test-taking approach that is holding him back. More often than not, he can’t articulate it and your tutor won’t figure out by observing. The traditional approach to improve test scores is (1) identify the types of problems with the most mistakes, (2) re-teach the skills that should have been learned in school and (3) give… Read More

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