Should children learn self-control?

The ability of young children to control their emotional and cognitive impulses, it turns out, is a remarkably strong indicator of both short-term and long-term success, academic and otherwise.

Developing executive function skills (as these skills are called) is a matter of practice not (just) of genes and early childhood experiences.

via Can the Right Kinds of Play Teach Self-Control?

Inter-disciplinary collaboration and experiential learning

Interesting podcast on NPR, in which game designer Will Wright interviews Biologist E. O. Wilson about games and collaboration.

Besides encouraging everyone to listen to the entire interview, I want to highlight two points:

The importance of bridging the disciplines to answer fundamental questions about human behavior – is altruism learned or in our genes?

Wilson says that he thinks we can’t have any answers before we’ve done a lot more science to find them. And he believes that the best way to do that is to integrate science with the other great branches of learning — the social sciences and humanities.

The importance of new education standards to prepare young people for life. Experiential learning is how we as a species learn best and games are a risk free way to learn experientially.

“I’ll go to an even more radical position,” Wilson said. “I think games are the future in education. We’re going through a rapid transition now. We’re about to leave print and textbooks behind.”

Tim Hwang’s presentation at Participation Camp 09 adds some more thought to the role of games discussion.

I wonder if games can also play a role to bridge disciplines towards more integrated research.