Curtis is the original genius behind the Think Tanks. Like the Cerebellum, he coordinates everything behind the scenes to put issues together.
Educator, writer, and presenter, Curtis Kelly (EdD), has a life mission: “to reduce the suffering of the classroom.” He writes materials for “3L” students with Low ability, Low confidence, and Low motivation, including Active Skills for Communication (Cengage), Writing from Within (Cambridge), and Significant Scribbles (Longman). He is a professor at Kansai University in Osaka and was recently a Teaching Fellow in Harvard’s, The Neuroscience of Learning, his favorite research topic. He is the founder of the JALT Mind, Brain, and Education SIG, and produces this magazine, the MindBrainEd Think Tanks.
Stephen is our main copy editor. Like Wernicke's Area, he processes all submissions to make sure they have the correct words and meanings.
Stephen M. Ryan
Stephen M. Ryan teaches at Sanyo Gakuen University in Okayama, Japan. After years of teaching English, he is still getting it wrong on a daily basis. On the good days, he learns from his students. The thrill never gets old.
Julia is our webmaster. Like the Prefrontal Cortex, she organizes things so readers can find the information they need when they need it.
Julia Daley is a senior lecturer at Hiroshima Bunkyo University, where she teaches English conversation and writing. She earned her MA in TESL at Northern Arizona University and is certified to teach secondary English in Arizona. She appreciates everyone’s patience as she learns how to develop a website.
Marc's the one with a sense of humor who finds the bulk of our intro videos and other interesting tidbits. He and the Hippocampus both look like a seahorse.
Marc Helgesen, Miyagi Gakuin Women’s University, is author of English Teaching and the Science of Happiness.
(ABAX) and the English Firsthand
Skye is one of our editors and recruiter of writers. Like the Temporal-Parietal Cortex, she devotes a lot of her time to the social cognition of others.
Skye Playsted is an educator with over 20 years of teaching experience as a second language and music teacher in Australian schools. She has taught English to adult students as a volunteer in community refugee support groups, and has been teaching in vocational colleges and university academic English programs in Australia. She is doing her PhD through the University of Wollongong, Australia, in the areas of reflective practice, teacher cognition and oral communication pedagogy in beginner adult English language classrooms.
Heather is one of our editors. Like the vestibular system, she helps the Think Tank team maintain equilibrium and keep upcoming issues on track.
Heather Kretschmer is an English Coordinator at the Georg August University of Göttingen, Germany. She has taught English in a variety of educational contexts since receiving Master of Arts degrees in German and TESL from Bowling Green State University in Ohio. By drawing on information from applied linguistics and the science of learning, she does her best to create brain-friendly, inclusive learning environments for students.
Jason brings his journalism background to the editing team. Like the Corpus Callosum, he facilitates communication between voices on opposite sides.
Jason is the Assistant Director of the Core English program at Nagoya University of Foreign Studies and has lived in central Japan since 2009. His primary research interests can be found at the intersection of learner autonomy and positive psychology. When he's not raging against native speakerism in Asian EFL education, he's likely camping, playing pen-and-paper tabletop games, or growing chili peppers.
Just like the VMPFC, Afon is devoted to working on integrating emotional processing, decision-making, social cognition, and memory.
Afon (Mohammad) Khari
Ventromedial Prefrontal Cortex
Having studied diverse domains of Language, Literature, Art, Philosophy, and Neuroscience, Afon is very much interested in making interdisciplinary connections. Afon (Mohammad) Khari is an Iranian researcher and currently a master’s student in Brain and Cognitive Sciences (MBCS) at the University of Amsterdam. He holds a BA in English Literature, an MA in Philosophy of Art, and a CELTA. He has been reading and researching on the integration of neuroscience into pedagogy, sharing his ideas through a series of professional development sessions. His research interests encapsulate Mind, Brain, and Education (MBE) alongside neuroscience, cognitive science, philosophy of cognition, AI, and educational psychology.
Nicky is our designer for the Think Tanks. Like the thalamus, she processes sensory (visual) information and relays it to our readers in an accessible way.
Nicky De Proost
Nicky De Proost is an English lecturer who specialises in media literacy and reading comprehension. She holds a BA in Education, an MA in English Literature and Linguistics, and a CELTA. Having worked in the video game industry, she is currently interested in the research into video game narratives, as well as the mind sciences in literature. A human-shaped bat, emerging from her cave at night to forage and check the design of the latest Think Tank issue. Loves Dungeons & Dragons.
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