Thursday 24 May 2012

Book Review - 'Place for dance in whole-child education: a scientific perspective' by Dr. Harbans Nakra - Dr. Sunil Kothari

Dr Nakra has described a model of the Human Brain – Behavior System based on the view that brain is an information processing system with an input from the sense organs and an output that represents behavior. Between these two end points, seven processing Functions are described.

Analysis & evaluation
Decision making
Emotional brain
Imagination and
Action or expression

The first letter of each of the above has been shown in bold to highlight the remarkable acronym that emerges. PAIDEIA is an ancient Greek term that referred to a system of general education. The descriptions of these functions, Dr. Nakra explains, include two important elements of the system: Cognition and Empathy. Neatly divided into three parts in Part I (chapters 1 and 2) our current understanding of the human brain-behaviour system is described. This provides a scientific basis for defining the needs of developmental education, which are presented in Part II (chapter 3) and in Part III (chapter 4) the potential of dance training for meeting the needs of developmental education is presented. Dr. Nakra believes that this will justify a solid pedagogic footing for the inclusion of dance as a subject in the school curriculum.

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