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  Santa Cruz Parent Santa Cruz, CA

February 24, 2014
How's Your Memory?
Remember Like An Actor

Christine: Top of Mount Everest is Bottom of Ocean
Public Lecture March 6: The Biology of Memory

This Week
Baby Sign Language Introductory Class
Click to view our Business Directory
  How's Your Memory?

(Graphics) Memory_Remember.jpgI marvel at how musicians know the words to hundreds of songs and actors can do an entire play without forgetting their lines.  Does your memory work the way you want it to? If not, read on for some tips.

Annie Murphy Paul writes about how actors memorize prodigious amounts.  Read this article and put her good research into practice, and share with the children.  Next plan on attending a great lecture on The Biology of Memory in a few weeks.

It's a "save-the-date" event, so interesting you will want to reserve a ticket.  As part of their annual Speaker Series on Education, Gateway School, Mount Madonna School, York School, and Cabrillo College are bringing Dr. Robert Sapolsky, reknowned neuroscientist, to present a talk, The Biology of Memory, at Cabrillo College's Crocker Theater on Thursday, March 6. 

Dr. Sapolsky is an amazingly accomplished writer, scientist and educator from Stanford University and is also a very dynamic speaker! 

For Moms, Dads, Grandparents & Professionals Serving Families: We want your thoughts on feminism, signed or anonymous.  How has the feminism movement/philosophy affected your life? Please email us a thought or more!

My apologies for the newsletter not getting out last Thursday.  The gremlins were at it again.  It happens!

Enjoy the weekend,  Parmalee

  Remember Like An Actor

by Annie Murphy Paul

(Photos General) Memory_ShakespeareKidActors.jpgSo you say you have a wedding toast to memorize? A twenty-minute speech you have to know by heart? A list of people's names you absolutely must remember? That's nothing! Imagine delivering the long soliloquies of Shakespeare or the impassioned speeches of Arthur Miller or the razor-sharp dialogue of David Mamet.

When it comes to memorization, professional actors can claim bragging rights. They must reproduce their scripts exactly-no improvising allowed-night after night, under blinding lights, in front of a demanding audience.

How do they do it? Helga Noice, a professor of psychology at Elmhurst College in Illinois, has spent more than 20 years investigating that question, and her findings hold lessons for all of us who must sometimes commit words to memory.

Noice's first and most surprising discovery is that most actors don't memorize their lines in the traditional sense at all. Rather, they begin by reading the script over and over again, looking for what they call the "throughline"-the causal chain that leads one event in the play to topple into the next and the next. "Almost every line of the script is mined for clues as to the characters, situations, or relationships," Noice writes, commenting on the method practiced by the actors she interviewed.

They are searching for the intentions of the play's characters: why they do what they do, and especially, why they say what they say. Actors pay minute attention to every snatch of dialogue because each word offers a hint of the speaker's motivations and desires. As they engage in this "micro-level" processing of the material, Noice notes, memorization of the lines just happens: "At no time did the actors attempt to memorize the words directly, but rather tried to discern why the character would use those particular words to express that particular thought."

Another key to actors' superlative memories: words are often intimately connected to actions onstage. Cast members' movements are carefully blocked out during rehearsal, and so their lines are always matched to the same physical motions, forming a kind of bodily mnemonic device. Indeed, Noice's studies show that months after the final performance of a play, actors recalled dialogue that had been accompanied by movement about the stage better than dialogue that had been spoken while remaining in place.

"You've got to have these two tracks going simultaneously-"This is what I say, and this is when and where I move,'" one of the actors told Noice. "One feeds the other, and you move and say the line" in a synchrony of speech and action.
 
Lastly, the emotions actors bring to their parts sear the words into their memories. Acting is no dry recitation, but an evocation of actual emotion and the visceral feelings brought forth on stage make the words that go with them hard to forget. Although these principles were enumerated by professional actors and not cognitive psychologists, all three of them-deep processing, physical movement and emotional associations-find substantial support in the scientific literature on memory.

So the next time you need to know something by heart, take a cue from those who learn lines for a living. Try "to find out the whys," as one actor described his process of searching for the deeper meaning behind a text. Try to tie the words you speak to the moves your body makes-the gestures you proffer at certain points in a speech, for example, or the welcoming posture you adopt when you're greeting new acquaintances. And infuse your delivery with some real emotion. Applause will surely follow.


Brilliant readers, have you found ways to remember your "lines" when you have to speak in public? Please share your experiences on my blog.

I love to hear from readers. Please email me at annie@anniemurphypaul.com. You can also visit my website.  Be brilliant!

 

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  Christine: Top of Mount Everest is Bottom of Ocean

(Photos General) Mount_Everest.jpgSometimes I find out about something that makes me just smile all over and I want to give Science a great big hug. Since I don't know how to do that, instead I tell the wonderful thing to my little guy and give him a hug. Hey, it's a hug!

Here is the wonderful thing - The top of Mount Everest is composed of rocks from the bottom of the ocean. If you climb Everest and dig around (assuming you still have energy), you can find marine fossils like trilobites.  The why of this fascinating fact is amazing...  Read more>>>

Christine is a local mom and scientist.  You can read more of Christine's science explanations here!

  Public Lecture March 6: The Biology of Memory

As a boy in New York City, Robert M. Sapolsky dreamed of living inside the African dioramas in the Museum of Natural History. By the age of twenty-one, he made it to Africa and joined a troop of baboons. In fact, he chose to live with the baboons because he found that they were perfect for learning about stress and stress-related diseases in humans. The uniqueness of Dr. Sapolsky's perspective on the human condition comes from the ease with which he combines his insights from the field with his findings as a neuroscientist. For more than thirty years, Dr. Sapolsky has divided his time between field work with baboons and highly technical neurological research in the laboratory.

(Photos General) RobertSapolsky.jpgInternationally acclaimed neuroscientist and author Dr. Sapolsky, a Stanford University professor of neurology and neurological sciences, will be the featured presenter at a public lecture on education on Thursday, March 6 at Cabrillo College in Aptos.

Dr. Sapolsky's lecture, at 7 p.m. in the college's Crocker Theater, is FREE but space is limited. Reserve your seat at:  http://tinyurl.com/SapolskySantaCruz. The event is co-presented by Gateway School, Mount Madonna School, York School, and Cabrillo College as part of their annual Speaker Series on Education.

"The purpose of the speaker series is to bring together parents, educators, and civic leaders to learn from leading scholars and researchers about best practices in teaching and learning," said Percy Abram, Head of School at Gateway School. "Dr Sapolsky's work on integrating field studies and his research as a neurobiologist help us to better understand our evolution, the impact of our environment on our growth and susceptibility to disease, and how the human brain functions to support life-long learning."

Mary Supriya McDonald, Head of the Lower School, Mount Madonna School, adds, "Dr. Sapolsky will share his vast scientific knowledge, leading to a deeper awareness of how our minds work and what we can do as individuals to maximize our potential and lead healthier, happier lives."

In addition to his faculty position at Stanford, Dr. Sapolsky is a research associate with the Institute of Primate Research Museums of Kenya, and a MacArthur Fellowship recipient. He has been called "one of the best scientist-writers of our time" by novelist Oliver Sacks and "one of the finest natural history writers around" by The New York Times.

"As educators and parents we are vitally interested in understanding how we learn and how we remember what we learn," states Chuck Harmon, Head of York School. "We invite you to take advantage of this opportunity to explore teaching and learning with a distinguished scientist and dynamic speaker."

Sponsors of the Annual Educational Speakers Event

(Logos Business) GatewaySchoolLogo.jpg (Logos Business) MountMadonnaSchool_witheagle.jpg (Logos Business) YorkSchool_Logo.jpg (Logos Business) CabrilloCollege_Logo.jpg

Cabrillo College is located at 6500 Soquel Drive, Aptos, Calif.  General parking is available in the Cabrillo College self-pay parking lots. Pay stations accept cash or credit card for the $4 fee. The author will be available for a book signing after the event.

Dr. Robert Sapolsky has produced, in addition to numerous scientific papers, books for broader audiences, including A Primate's Memoir: A Neuroscientist's Unconventional Life Among the Baboons, Why Zebras Don't Get Ulcers: Stress Disease and Coping, and The Trouble with Testosterone. For more information about Dr. Sapolsky visit www.barclayagency.com/sapolsky/html

 

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  This Week

(BUILT IN) (Icons/Graphics) Text_Calendar.jpg(Ads) SantaCruzParentFacebook.jpgBelow is only a partial list of upcoming events and activities so be sure to click on our EVENT CALENDAR so you do not miss anything >>

Use the PARENT PLANNER to click on events and resources you are interested in and click PRINT MY PLANNER to print or email your list.

 

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School Corner

Gateway K-8, Mount Madonna PreK-12, York School 6-12 & Cabrillo College: An Evening with Science and Nature Writer, Biologist and Neuroscientist, and Stress Expert, Dr. Robert M. Sapolsky, 3/6

 

 

Chartwell and The New High School Project K-12, Free Workshop: Keep Calm and Parent On: Dealing with Emotional Upsets 3/12

 

 

Soquel PENS (Parent Education Nursery School) Banana Slug Fundraising Concert 3/15

 

 

All School Activities

 

Clubs for Kids

 

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Mister Mom

The Bay Area's Only
Live Talk Radio Show
About Parenting

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Sundays 2-3pm

KSCO 1080 AM

or online or smartphone
at

ksco.com

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Clubs for Parents!

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Parenting Workshops

 

Support Groups

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 Baby Sign Language Introductory Class

 

Baby Sign Language Introductory Class


Touch Blue Sky Baby Sign Language
Introductory Workshop on how easy it is to teach signing to your baby
Date: 02/24/2014 from 3:30pm to 5:00pm
Ages: Birth to 18 months Admission Fees: $50.00
Special Instructions: Early bird registration $40.00

Stop guessing what your baby is trying to tell you. Baby Sign Language gives children the opportunity to communicate long before they can verbalize their wants and needs. Signing accelerates verbal language, gives your child a sense of control and deepens the bond between you and your baby.

Our Introductory Workshop introduces beginning signs based on American Sign Language (ASL). Fun activities and songs show how easy it can be to integrate simple signs into your everyday routine. Birth-18 months.

Register here.

Introductory Workshops
One 90 minute session | Birth to 18 months $50  (Early Bird Registration is $40)

Monday,  Feb. 24,   3:30 - 5:00 p.m  Click to register today

Monday,  Aug. 25,
   3:30 - 5:00 p.m.  Registration opens June

Monday,  Oct. 13,
   3:30 - 5:00 p.m.  Registration opens Aug.


Location: Well Being Center, 5905 Soquel Drive, Soquel Map
Phone: (650) 571-0337 •website Soquel

Girls Night Out
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  Girls Night Out
Art Factory
Date: Every Fri (Oct 14-Dec 16) from 7:00pm to 9:00pm
Details: Treat yourself to some time with the girls, wine and cheese and a create evening
City: Aptos Phone: 831-688-8862 view all details >>
     
How's your memory?
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Natural Childbirth Education with Kaili Reynolds
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  Natural Childbirth Education with Kaili Reynolds
Luma Yoga and Family Center
Date: Every Su (Feb 28-Mar 20) from 2:00pm to 5:00pm
Details: A Support Group for parents-to-be
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