Coffee Break:  Developing Critical Skillsets for 21st Century Success

We all understand that the world in which our children are growing up is vastly different from the one in which we did.  As globalization and improved technology continue to accelerate the quantity of and access to information, a highly developed “executive function” will become increasingly important to the students who will lead us into the brave new world of tomorrow.  Coffee Break’s speaker, Dr. Judy Willis, M.D., M. Ed., will address specific strategies parents and educators can use to help children develop critical “executive functions” of the prefrontal cortex, which is the last part of the human brain to mature.  This control center includes judgment, critical analysis, prioritizing, deduction, induction, imagination, communication, reflective (versus reactive) emotional control, goal development, planning, and perseverance.

Dr. Willis is a highly-respected authority on brain research especially as it relates to how children learn. She has a unique and broad background as a practicing neurologist, classroom teacher, as well as an adjunct professor at UC Santa Barbara’s Graduate School of Education.  She has written six books about applying the mind, brain, and education research to classroom teaching strategies, including the best-seller Research-Based Strategies to Ignite Student Learning.

 Dr. Willis promises to include suggestions for parents to use with children of all ages to promote their development of the executive function networks that will prepare them to participate fully in the opportunities for creative problem solving, innovation and personal fulfillment in the 21st century that they will inherit.

Join PTA’s Coffee Break, Wednesday, March 20th, 8:30 – 10:00 a.m., at the Aliso Creek Inn and Golf Course, $10 donation at the door.


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