Tuesday, July 27, 2010


This brief article in NewScientist, "We Humans Can Mind-Meld, Too," says people listening to a story produced the same brain patterns as the narrator -- just a few seconds later.  In a few cases, the listeners' patterns even preceded the storyteller's.  (I've experienced that myself: watching certain television shows or movies, I can often say the next line before the character does.  Poor writing, not my genius!)

These findings seem like neurological support for the well-documented phenomenon of entrainment, when people in conversational sync spontaneously mirror each other's movements and rhythms.  Guess we do it on the brain level, too.    Does this explain why my sister and I so frequently say the same thing at the same time?  We even do it while instant messaging.

So, fellow trainers, how can we encourage this shared neurological dance with our classes?  And does this give you new ideas about the effectiveness of story in adult learning?

Wait, I know what you're going to say...