Brain Symposium

Punahou School hosts a multi-day symposium designed for practicing educators and focusing on learning and the brain. Invited guest speakers offer keynote addresses, and breakout sessions provide a wide range of topics specifically to support classroom teaching and curriculum development.

The timing of the Brain Symposium changed from summer to winter in 2017:

Featuring Tracey Tokuhama-Espinosa, author of Mind, Brain, and Education 
Tuesday, February 7, 2017 8 a.m.3 p.m. 

Past Symposiums

2015: Design the Learning

Design the Learning

Featuring Daniel Pink, author of “A Whole New Mind,” “Drive” and “To Sell is Human” and David Yeager, experimental development psychologist and assistant professor, University of Texas – Austin

Daniel Pink offered a keynote speech, “Engaging the Learner: How to Be and What to Do” and David Yeager presented a keynote with a practical deep dive on “Designing a Mindset Context.” A choice of educator sessions during the two days offered teachers a variety of aspects to consider in their classrooms, building on growth mindsets and engagement.

Brain Symposium Addresses Engagement and Mindset in the Classroom
Punahou News, June 16, 2015

2014: Growth Mindsets and Decision Making

Growth Mindsets and Decision Making – From Research to Practice

Featuring Dr. Carol Dweck, author of “Mindset”

The fifth annual Brain Symposium, presented by Professional Programs at Punahou, featured a lecture by renowned psychologist Carol Dweck, Ph.D., in-depth discussion sessions and a workshop by Junior School Principal Mike Walker. Dweck explained how adopting a growth mindset can enhance learning, and gave participating educators the tools to encourage growth mindsets in themselves and their students.

2014 Brain Symposium Fostered Growth Mindset
Punahou News, June 13, 2014

2013: The Resilient Brain

The Resilient Brain – From Research to Practice

Featuring Dr. Daniel J. Siegel, author of “Mindsight” and “the Whole-Brain Child”

The 2013 Brain Symposium offered two keynotes and an evening public presentation in addition to four breakout sessions presented in partnership with Learning & the Brain® and Landmark College. Dr. Daniel J. Siegel, clinical professor of psychiatry at the UCLA School of Medicine and co-director of the Mindful Awareness Research Center, addressed educators in his keynotes, focusing on the roles of mindfulness, relationships and resiliency in education.

Brain Symposium Explores the Life of the Mind
Punahou News, June 21, 2013

2012: Educating the Whole Student

Educating the Whole Student – From Research to Practice

Featuring John Medina, author of “Brain Rules” and “Brain Rules for Baby”

The 2012 Brain Symposium expanded to include a free, public lecture amid a wide variety of talks and workshops. Best-selling author John Medina, affiliate professor of bioengineering at the University of Washington School of Medicine and director of the Brain Center for Applied Learning Research at Seattle Pacific University, shared ways neuroscience may boost learning.

Brain Symposium Reaches Broad Audience
Punahou News, June 20, 2012

2011: Educating with the Brain in Mind

Educating with the Brain in Mind – From Research to Practice

Featuring David Eagleman from Baylor School of Neurology

The 2011 Brain Symposium welcomed David Eagleman, whose work in the Department of Neuroscience and Psychiatry at Baylor College of Medicine focuses on understanding how different brains construct perception.

Brain Symposium Brings Neuroscience to the Classroom
Punahou News, June 20, 2011

2010: Brain-based Education

Brain-based Education – From Research to Practice

Featuring Frank Kros from The Upside Down Organization

In 2010, Frank Kros, a specialist in brain-based learning, headlined the symposium "Brain-based Education – From Research to Practice" with three keynote topics: An Introduction to Brain-based Learning, A Brain-Friendly Teaching Model, and Rethinking ADHD: What Works, What Doesn't and Why. Breakout sessions included topics such as creativity and innovation in teaching; the important role of play; individualizing pedagogical structures for diverse learners; and applying the latest brain research to common classroom challenges.

What Were You Thinking?!!
Punahou News, June 25, 2010