Strategies for Getting and Keeping the Brain's Attention
human brain has an amazing capacity to wield a potent cognitive
strategy: selective attention. When we consciously focus our attention
on something, we bring the power of the prefrontal cortex to this
By honing our ability to focus attention at will, we can more
effectively screen out two types of distractions:
Input through our sensory organs, and
Our emotional responses.
Distractions via sensory input may be the easier of the two to block, according to Daniel Goleman in his book Focus: The Hidden Driver of Excellence.
As educators, we may tend to notice the impact of sights, sounds, and
touch points that draw students' focus away from lessons and learning
activities. But while all of the sensory stimulations in the environment
are readily obvious, emotions can be even "louder" when it comes to
diverting attention in unwanted directions and making it hard to focus