Ep. 21: Fred Morrison, Ph.D. - Diamond Dust & Self-Regulation


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Nov 14 2017 35 mins   1

In 1885, William Bentley placed a snowflake under his camera lens and took a first-of-its-kind photo only to then spend the next 50 years of his life capturing snowflakes with these incredible, vibrant designs. Apparently, the crystal of a snowflake starts as a tiny spec of dust or even pollen that attracts water vapor to form a preliminary hexagon called "diamond dust." After that, it’s sheer randomness how all the rest of the shape expands to form a beautiful and yet unique structure. The scientists know that factors such as temperature and humidity have some influence, but they are not completely certain as to why each snowflake is unique.We can apply the scientific truth behind the statement, "no two snowflakes are alike," to the human brain as no two brains are alike. At this point, we are not certain what makes each child’s brain unique and how it influences the development of self-regulation. Today, our guest, Dr. Fred Morrison, will shed light on the fact that we do know that when our students become self-regulated learners we will have more engaged learners in the classroom, greater ease in navigating the classroom instructions, and direct ways of impacting students’ abilities to persist.

About Fred Morrison, Ph.D.
Dr. Morrison is currently Professor of Psychology, Professor in the Combined Program in Education and Psychology and Research Professor in the Institute for Social Research at the University of Michigan. In recent years, his research has focused on understanding the nature and sources of children’s cognitive, literacy and social development over the school transition period. The work ranges from conducting basic research studies utilizing natural experiments and large-scale longitudinal descriptive studies of children’s developmental trajectories to developing, implementing and evaluating  two major school-based interventions aimed at improving children’s learning during the preschool and early school years. Recently, he has been exploring schooling effects on brain and behavioral measures of children’s self-regulation. He has been recognized for his contributions to development and education, being awarded the Dina Feitelson award for the second time, for the best research article published in 2005 and 2015. He has been continuously funded by federal grating agencies for 25 years. Over that period, he has served on national review panels at NICHD, NSF and IES.  He has mentored approximately 50 graduate student and 8 post-doctoral fellows.

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