Podcast: Print Books Build Better Brains

Published by Gina Wentling | Topics: Publications, Training

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Real Science-$-KidsAs in Episode 8 (Outsourcing Case Study), Dr. Rebecca Keller of Real Science-4-Kids joins Dan and Tony in the Omnipress podcast room. Rebecca writes science books for kids, teaching the basic building blocks they need to understand science and use that knowledge as adults, whether or not they go into science professionally.

Tony asks Rebecca why she still prints her books, rather than going online. She had found research that showed the brain understands content by looking for landmarks—margins, font, color, and more—helps you retain information. Your brain actually wires itself differently when reading printed text than it does when you consume content from a digital platform.

Rebecca now goes to print books for information she wanted to learn well. If you really want to focus, print books simply build better brains and memory. Consider as well the distractions that digital platforms bring. As Rebecca said, “I can go online to do real research and always end up with cat videos.” We’ve all been there!

You can get lost in a novel, too, but it’s a different kind of lost. Rebecca recommends Nicholas Carr’s book on the subject, The Shallows: What the Internet is Doing to Our Brains. Dan loves this discussion. In past podcasts, we’ve discussed whether print is dead. With her visit, Rebecca brings knowledge to conclusions we’ve already suggested.

Tony reaffirmed that we’re not Luddites; we know the benefits of using an LMS or LTM as supplementation. Rebecca agreed to the validity of other methods of learning, but points out that we’re coming to realize that the medium really does matter.

The hand/eye coordination that kids learn from computer games is useful for sports, soldiers, or using robots in a science lab, for example. We set up this dichotomy, Rebecca says, of print versus digital. There are good reasons for both and “we’re coming into an age where we are trying to decide what is good for print and what is good for digital, for what outcome.” Dan follows that up with a pitch for blended learning as the ultimate tool, offering both print and digital.

Many thanks to guest Dr. Rebecca Keller of Gravitas Publications! Find her books at RealScience4Kids.com or call 505-266-2761. For more on the podcast, visit Omnipress.com/podcast or email podcast@omnipress.com.


About Gina Wentling

During her time as Marketing Communications Coordinator (2013-16), Gina wrote hundreds of blog posts for Omnipress. Her work has also been published in association publications. Read More.

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