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Newsletter of Project Renaissance and Win Wenger January 2008
WELCOME to all new members who have joined us recently. We hope to hear
from you and to give you much food for thought. Back issues available
upon request - just add the month to the subject line:
Or see the online archives: http://www.winwenger.com/strmlist.htm
IN THIS ISSUE:
* Quotes of the Month
* Project Renaissance Consulting & Tutoring
* Project Renaissance Corebooks
* Events, Workshops, Classes
* Announcements, News Items, Help Wanted
* FEATURE ARTICLE:
* Comments, Feedback
Win Wenger on Learning Potential
Linda Dobbs on The Stream
* Organizational Notes
QUOTES OF THE MONTH
We all have ability. The difference is how we use it. - Stevie Wonder
The successful man will profit from his mistakes and try again in a
different way. - Dale Carnegie
Do not look where you fell, but where you slipped. - African proverb
CONSULTING AND TUTORING
Project Renaissance is pleased to offer consulting and workshops
customized for your organization's needs. Contact Rick Hansen
( mailto:email@example.com ) to discuss how you can benefit
from Win Wenger's consulting services.
Project Renaissance is providing Socratic Learning classes for secondary
school students in the greater Washington DC area. Contact Rick Hansen
( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org ) for more information.
Arasu Chellaiah is using Dr. Wenger's Socratic Learning method to teach
college courses for Biology majors and DDS (Doctors of Dental Surgery).
Contact Arasu Chellaiah ( mailto:email@example.com ) or Win
Wenger ( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org ) for more information.
Win Wenger and Rick Hansen will be using Win's Socratic Learning
Method for tutoring college students pursuing degrees in Electrical
Engineering. Contact The Stream ( mailto:email@example.com or
Rick Hansen ( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org ) for more information.
PROJECT RENAISSANCE'S NEW COREBOOKS
A series of compact handbooks of Win Wenger's key techniques. The first
four volumes are now in print and easy to order from the publisher:
* SUPER SKILLS FOR STUDENTS by Isa McKechnie
* WIN WENGER'S IMAGE-STREAMING by Charles Roman
* END WRITER'S BLOCK FOREVER! by Mark Bossert, Win Wenger
* DYNAMIC TEACHING by Harman Benda and Win Wenger
Order directly from the CoreBook storefront: www.lulu.com/ProjRen
EVENTS, WORKSHOPS, CLASSES
Paul Scheele is teaching a public PhotoReading seminar in Minneapolis,
MN, April 11-13 2008. PhotoReading is an excellent method of getting
through information up to 18 times faster than conventional studying.
This course comes with a money-back guarantee. Call 888-800-2688 or go
to www.LearningStrategies.com/PhotoReading/ScheeleSeminar for more
PhotoReading coaching is also available! Contact Mr. Dana Hanson, at
YOGA FROM WITHIN
Relaxation and other Yoga workshops provide an enjoyable combination of
exercise and fun, healing and the arts. Beethoven once said, "Silence
is the key - the silence between the notes. When that silence envelops
you - you are at one. You are at peace. Then your soul can sing."
Classes are taught in the Washington DC metro area. See their schedule:
Winter is here. And so is Precipice Improv Theater's Winter season. It
continues each Saturday until March 22, 2008, in Bethesda MD. At each
show, Precipice creates a different, totally improvised comic play from
your suggestions. For more information, go to www.precipiceimprov.com/.
PROJECT RENAISSANCE DOUBLE FESTIVAL
May 23-31, 2008 - Annual Double Festival - Mark your calendar now!
16th Annual Conference on Creative Problem-Solving Methods and
Enhanced/Accelerated Learning Techniques and Spring Workshops of
Project Renaissance. www.winwenger.com/upcoming.htm#DF
August 1-3, 2008 - Invention-on-Demand Training Fall Workshop with
Win Wenger and Chuck Roman, in Gaithersburg, MD. Reserve your spot
now! Send an e-mail to mailto:email@example.com
WIN WENGER'S TEACHING AND RECORDING SCHEDULE - Spring 2008
* March 7-9 - teaching at a creativity conference in Bradenton, Florida.
* Late March-April period - Denver for several days of audio recording.
* April - further training of a school's faculty in Buffalo, NY, in
Project Renaissance accelerated learning methods.
* May 2-4 weekend - Mensa Regional Gathering, DC/Maryland chapters.
* May 15-18 - Atlanta, GA, teaching at a major creativity conference.
* May 23-31 - our BEST, DF and TT events in Pasadena, MD.
ANNOUNCEMENTS, NEWS ITEMS, HELP WANTED
Our thanks to Rick Hansen for all his contributions in putting together
this issue of The Stream. We hope he will continue to give us the benefit
of his enthusiasm, energy and educational expertise in future issues.
NEWBORN BRAIN CELLS MODULATE LEARNING AND MEMORY
La Jolla, CA - Boosted by physical and mental exercise, neural stem
cells continue to sprout new neurons throughout life, but the exact
function of these newcomers has been the topic of much debate. Removing
a genetic master switch that maintains neural stem cells in their
proliferative state finally gave researchers at the Salk Institute for
Biological Studies some definitive answers.
Without adult neurogenesis - literally the "birth of neurons" -
genetically engineered mice turned into "slow learners" that had trouble
navigating a water maze and remembering the location of a submerged
platform, the Salk investigators report in the Jan. 30, 2008, Advance
Online Edition of Nature. The findings suggest that, one day, orally
active drugs might be used to influence memory function.
QUALITY OF SLEEP DETERMINES WHERE THE BRAIN STORES MEMORIES
As time passes, our memories are transferred to different parts of the
brain in order to ideally store our past experiences. While scientists
have known that sleep plays an important role in helping consolidate
memories, a new study investigates the role of sleep a step further,
and shows how one night of sleep can lead to changes in brain activity
six months after an event has occurred.
The group of researchers, from the University of Liege in Belgium, has
published their results in a recent issue of the Proceedings of the
National Academy of Sciences. Their research shows that a good night’s
sleep after learning word pairs enhances memory processing in the
hippocampus, and induces information transfer between the hippocampus
and medial prefrontal cortex (mPFC). This transfer serves to consolidate
memories, helping new memories become stable and immune to interfering
“Our work shows how the development of a trace left by new memories
depends on sleep,” co-author Steffen Gais told PhysOrg.com.
NOTE FROM THE EDITOR - Sleep is important. If you think that you can
stay sharp while working 80-hour weeks and not sleeping - think again.
MENTAL AND PHYSICAL EXERCISE DELAYS DEMENTIA IN FATAL GENETIC DISEASE
Scientists at Melbourne’s Howard Florey Institute have discovered that
mental and physical stimulation delays the onset of dementia in the
fatal genetic disease, Huntington's disease. This Australian research
opens up new therapeutic possibilities for other devastating and
difficult-to-treat brain diseases, including Alzheimer’s disease where
dementia is a key component.
The Florey’s Dr. Jess Nithianantharajah and Dr. Anthony Hannan showed
mice with the Huntington’s disease gene displayed impairments on
learning and memory tests at an early stage of the disease, prior to
the obvious signs of movement problems. However, Dr. Nithianantharajah
said by providing the mice with an enriched environment that enhanced
their mental and physical stimulation, the mice performed better on
these memory tests. Huntington’s is a very powerful model for nature-
EDITOR'S NOTE: A key insight of Win Wenger is that interaction is
required to fully benefit from learning. Mice in a rich learning
environment lived much longer than usual. Mice who were not in a rich
environment, but who could view the activities in the rich learning
environment, did not live longer than normal. Lesson - Television and
passive viewing can never surpass an interactive experience.
By the way, Capitol College - www.capitol-college.edu - was founded
on the use of "hands on" learning to complement classroom teaching
in Electronic Engineering. Capitol graduates were sought after in
Government and Industry for the superior skills and ability to
communicate with technicians and management.
LEARNING FROM EXPLAINING:
Does it matter if mom is listening?
From the Journal of Experimental Child Psychology:
Bethany Rittle-Johnson et al. conducted a study to examine whether
explaining to another person improves learning and transfer. In the
study, fifty-four 4- and 5-year-olds solved multiple classification
problems, received accuracy feedback, and were prompted to explain the
correct solutions to their moms, to explain the correct solutions to
themselves, or to repeat the solutions. Generating explanations (to
selves or moms) improved problem-solving accuracy at posttest, and
explaining to mom led to the greatest problem-solving transfer. The
study indicates that explanation prompts can facilitate transfer in
children as young as 5 years and reveals that it matters if mom is
listening. (Copyright 2007 Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.)
This study was also cited in Education Week, January 30, 2008:
Researchers Examine Importance of Learning From ‘Explaining’ -
Learning improves dramatically among young children who take the
time to explain academic concepts to their mothers or who explain
their logic aloud to themselves...
Win Wenger comments:
This scientific study answers the crucial question, whether our
Principle of Description, the focusing power of language, and the
immense educational and developmental power of concurrent describing
of one's thoughts, perceptions, observations, ideas, experiences,
feelings, and whatever awarenesses, have as much bearing on younger
children as they do on adults and older children. The resounding answer
is, these DO! There probably is no greater educational tool than this,
nor any developmental or neurodevelopmental tool.
It may be up to us to find ways, and better ways, to implement that
tool. What is your ingenuity - and problem-solving method - for devising
techniques wherein we can best get young children to delight in sharing
their concurrent awarenesses, and in drawing each other out in depth,
in detail, at length despite shorter attention-spans, in subtleties and
nuances, in context after context after context? Are there techniques
comparable to those we have for adults and for older children in learning
and problem-solving, invention- and discovery-making?
Thanks to Kathy Carroll for bringing this study to our attention.
FLASH! - PostNote just in. Preliminary results from an elementary
school's faculty in Buffalo, freshly trained in Project Renaissance
accelerated learning methods, are vividly showing that these modified
techniques are just as valuable for young children as our main methods
are for older children, college-age and adult students. The new version
of these methods, for elementary school age children, is the joint
product of Project Renaissance and of that school, announcements about
which are to be made later.
Gamepuzzles ( www.gamepuzzles.com ) is a long-time supporter of Dr. Win
Wenger's Project Renaissance and production of The Stream. Please visit
their website to learn more about their products that develop the mind.
Fun, challenging, intelligence-expanding, and more!
GIFTED EDUCATION PRESS QUARTERLY
Gifted Education Press is offering a complimentary copy of their new
Spring 2008 Online Quarterly issue. To read and print the current and
previous issues of Gifted Education Press Quarterly, please email your
request directly to:
Maurice Fisher, Ph.D., Publisher
TRANSLATORS WANTED - in any language, to translate selected contents
of the Project Renaissance website, the new CoreBooks series, and
certain books by Win Wenger. Please contact Win at
mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in collaborating on
SOCRATIC METHOD INSTRUCTORS WANTED - To test the Corebooks curriculum
in their classes. Contact Win at mailto:email@example.com for more
BUILDING MUSICAL SKILLS
by Win Wenger
The following arose out of an exchange between myself and a college
student who is studying music and who has been seeking a faster, easier
way to build his sought-for musical skills... He wrote:
* * *
"Recently I designed my own session for helping to develop
perfect pitch. Perfect pitch is the ability to know the exact
note when played...so if my professor plays a C sharp I can
recognize it immediately without any help just by hearing it.
The session I designed consists of brainwave entrainment
technology...such as theta/alpha waves used to help me memorize
the notes. I recorded each individual note into my microphone
and uploaded it into a special program. But I have a feeling
it's not working properly...how can I develop my hearing to a
perfect pitch level? What other methods could you suggest other
* * *
He was right: What he described isn't working and won't work. The base
line of his existing performance hasn't been established, much less built
into the program as a foundation. There is no sequence of iterated steps
of increasing challenge through which he can develop finer and finer
discriminations, and be reinforced on them, much less anything for
"predicting" and sounding tones.
Even though using multiple differentiated states of mind and brainwave
to input the sounds WILL help somewhat, as it will for the input phases
of any information, he would still need a way to activate such of that
information as he was able to install in order for it to be of much use
From one of my own letters in that exchange:
First, let me mention one approach, for which we need a computer game
designer to actualize.
PITCH-CONTROL COMPUTER GAME
(A) See www.winwenger.com/archives/part14.htm ("A Fun Way To Teach
Your 2-Year-Old to Sight-Read & Play Music — And Expand the Core of His
Intellectual Capacity!" — Winsights No. 14, July 1997), and then extend
the concept to that of successive presentations — presentations done
rapidly enough to build reflexes — done by computer game.
(B) Even a tin ear can tell the difference between one octave and
another, as a bottom-line starting point where, through a succession of
levels of challenge, one learns to discriminate to finer and finer
degrees. I figure taking it to something like 1/64th of a note during
the challenge of a game should carry over enough to discriminate notes
reflexively in casual, non-game use.
(C) Also important, the PREDICTION and voicing of tones so that you can
"sound" the 'A' or whatever tone from scratch. Likewise, via successive
levels of challenge, to something like 1/64th-tone difference during the
game likely to carry over to satisfactory perfect pitch sounding under
non-game conditions. (Such pitch control is only one aspect of a number
of inner musical skills we propose for such a computer game that should
eventually help this to materialize.)
TRAINING FOR PERFECT PITCH
(A) You may find yourself able to invent an entirely new, different and
effective approach to training perfect musical pitch through the method
known as "Toolbuildering" — see www.winwenger.com/toolbld.htm — and so
"visit" a "highly advanced but entirely human civilization" where even
the most klutz-eared enjoy perfect musical pitch, and be taken to the
point of experience which shows clearly what CAUSES everyone in that
(imagined?) civilization to enjoy such perfect musical pitch. Copy off
the tool or technique or practice you find there, which you can then use
for objective training purposes back here. "Toolbuilder" has been the
source of a good many of our Project Renaissance techniques.
(B) You can Google for programs which propose to teach or train the
skill of perfect musical pitch. Some of these might actually work — and
might not. It is hard for me to evaluate, since I have the trait already,
all my life, and thought of it as a bit of a mixed blessing until I
learned of its association with, and of its possibly being a cause of,
a radically expanded left plenum temporales — the apparent very core of
our intellect, since it is the organ in our brain which discriminates
nuances of word meanings. In people with perfect musical pitch,
physically the left plenum temporales is double the size of its
counterpart in people without perfect musical pitch.
(C) Every one of our forty or so online-published problem-solving
techniques can be used on the problem of finding an easy, effective,
rewarding way to train up perfect musical pitch. Take your choice! —
as often as you like, until you hit the payoff that best suits you.
In other correspondence, I also suggested use of the procedure at
www.winwenger.com/part44.htm ("Build Your Ability to Understand
Everything!" - Winsights No. 44, August 2000) as another main avenue
for training up such musical skills as perfect pitch, not only various
intellectual and conceptual proficiencies.
A further point why I am posting this exchange here in The STREAM:
I truly have no way of directly evaluating the effectiveness of
existing programs, as advertised online, for training up perfect
musical pitch. I need the help in this of people who do not now have
perfect pitch, but who are willing to experiment. If an existing
program does the job and does it well, I can simply link to it, for
the benefit of all interested in such things that come our way. If
not, we should develop a strong program for this, as there is strong
if circumstantial evidence that this could be another powerful tool
for heightening intellectual abilities. Could a half-dozen or more of
you, reading this, write me who do not now have perfect musical pitch
ability, and then be willing to undertake an effort to develop that
ability through one of the programs which come up when you Google
"train perfect music pitch"?
Also: I renew our request for the assistance of a computer game
designer and/or graphics effects person to develop computer-based
games to train this and related inner musical skills. Please contact
me at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org if you are able and willing to help.
To send your comments about this article to Win Wenger, write to:
To send your comments about this article to The Stream, write to:
COMMENTS and FEEDBACK
Win Wenger ( mailto:email@example.com ) writes on LEARNING POTENTIAL
How many times have you sat in a class or training session and heard
the leader say something about only a small percentage of our brain
being developed? The statement is in fact true, but not in the way
that leader was thinking. Next time you hear this piece of lore being
passed along, ask the person who said it to cite a source - which is
something we all could do more of. In recent correspondence, I was
"You say the skull can expand and the brain increase in size, but Tony
Buzan says that we are only using 1% of our brains, wouldn't that make
expansion pointless? I'm not sure if you agree with his theories or
My response: I wish Tony and the many others who have made similar
remarks about the percentage of brain usage would cite sources. Without
specified sources, such statements come across only as folklore. I did
the research and found a study and book by J. Z. Young, "A Model of The
Brain" (London, Oxford U. Press, 1964). Young sampled the brain and did
the counting, and was the source of the statement that between 5 and
10 percent of the brain is developed.
This point is important, because it reveals the method by which the
datum was arrived at. His criterion was the number, in proportion, of
cells that were developed. This was easiest to reckon as the number of
cells which were developed enough to have dendritic connections and
synapses with other cells. By that measure, between 5 and 10 percent of
the cells he sampled were developed enough to have connections with
other brain cells. He did not figure the DEGREE of that development,
from cell to cell.
And that is important, because while some brain cells have been counted
with upward of 60,000 connections with other cells, most have only a
dozen or so. Factor these considerations together and it clearly is not
true that 5-10% of the brain is developed. Not even 1% of the brain is
developed. More like one trillionth of one percent. In other words,
there appears to be some room for improvement!
I haven't found any publication or studies where Young's findings were
rejected or denied, only several articles quarreling in minor technical
ways with his strategies for sampling in the brain.
- Win Wenger, Ph.D. ( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org )
TESTIMONIAL from a reader of The Stream:
Sometime ago, I corresponded with Win Wenger regarding a health problem
and his specific suggestions helped me tremendously. I believe The Stream
not only keeps me abreast in the educational field, but is on the very
edge of the educational field.
Sincerely, Linda Dobbs ( mailto:email@example.com )
Do you have a similar experience? Please contact us! Email to:
To send your comments to The Stream for possible publication here, write
Project Renaissance is organizing a partners' bureau or real-time chat
resource online via Skype, msn or yahoo messenger for people looking
for partners with whom to do live Image-Streaming. We have now set up
a secure and accessible interface for you.
We are still looking for some moderators. If you have any experience
in using the phpBB Forum system, have had experience with Project
Renaissance Methods, and are interested in becoming a forum moderator,
please contact Tijl Koenderink at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org
Please go to www.projectrenaissance.com and register, then post your
information under the "ImageStreaming partners" topic. Some of you have
already provided your Skype names, desired times and languages; please
do so again in the forum.
Thanks, and welcome to the program going live. Our thanks especially to
Tijl Koenderink, the administrator of the Forum, for making this all
* ALBUQUERQUE, NM - Gaylord Galston ( mailto:email@example.com ) wonders
if there is anyone in the Albuquerque area with whom he can practise
* BALTIMORE - Gerald Hawkins offers interested parties to contact him
at mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org about starting a problem-solving and
idea-testing group in the Baltimore, Maryland, area.
* CHICAGO - Nick Costello ( mailto:email@example.com ) is interested in
attending meetings of Project Renaissance members in the Chicago area.
* DETROIT - Eric Bottorff ( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org ) is interested
in attending meetings of Project Renaissance members in the Ypsilanti
* LOS ANGELES - Ray Croney ( mailto:email@example.com ) seeks Image-
Streamers in the L.A. area.
* NEW JERSEY - Donald Morrison ( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org ) is
interested in joining an Image-Streaming group in the Bloomfield, NJ,
* TEXAS - Harry L. Beam, 6305 Poly Webb Road, Arlington, TX 76016 would
like to meet with other members of Project Renaissance in the Dallas/Fort
Worth area of Texas.
* VIRGINIA/WASH. DC - Siobhan Dunn ( mailto:email@example.com ) is
looking to partner with someone experienced in Image-Streaming in the
* TAMILNADU, INDIA - Raj Kumars ( mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org )
would like to practice Image-Streaming with a live listener in his area.
* VENICE, ITALY - Franco Tiveron ( mailto:email@example.com ) is
interested in learning and practicing Image-Streaming, in Italian or
English. Please contact him if you are already knowledgeable in this
technique and in the Venice area.
TOPICAL INTEREST GROUPS:
Our membership is large and diverse, and many of you have expressed an
interest in communicating with other members who share your topic of
concern or research interest. If you'd like us to share your email
address with other interested members, and to supply theirs to you,
please email your name, email address and subject/topic to:
Your communications will be private.
If your email address changes or your email box is full or your spam
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happens, make sure you notify us of any change and put winwenger.com
on your safe senders list. Write to:
Please do not use the unsubscribe link in such a case, then entering
a new subscribe message. This makes extra work for you and your
registrar and may result in deletion of all your personal information
from our records. Put any other updated information you'd like us to
have about you into the same address-change message.
SUBSCRIBER OR MEMBER?
If you currently only subscribe to The Stream, you can upgrade your
participation in Project Renaissance to full membership, free.
Membership in Project Renaissance entitles members to additional
benefits. If you're not yet a member, please register now, here:
www.winwenger.com/regmem.htm or from the link on the homepage,
If you received two (or more?) copies of this issue of The Stream,
please let us know by replying to:
HOW YOU CAN PARTICIPATE...
* The long-established, popular Image-Streaming egroup is here:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/imagestream - requires Yahoo sign-in.
* Submit articles, comments or questions for possible inclusion in
The Stream: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org?subject=TotheEditor
* Send questions or comments about the website, www.winwenger.com ,
to the webmaster, mailto:email@example.com
* Back issues of THE STREAM by email upon request from
* Index of feature articles in The Stream archives:
Starting in January 2007, the archived copies have a special cover
photo masthead courtesy of Elan Sun Star. Do take a look - they're
gorgeous and restorative.
* Archived copies of Capital Ideasmiths are here:
* Project Renaissance homepage: www.winwenger.com
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