First Gum Institute


Three of the Executive Leadership Institute participants, with gum.

This year’s Executive Leadership Institute became the first LERN event where participants were given and encouraged to chew gum.

While slightly tongue in cheek, new research shows that chewing gum improves both learning and test scores, according to Julie Coates, one of North America’s foremost authorities on learning.

More importantly, the premiere of gum at a LERN event marks an important turning point in our field, turning from a focus on the teacher or presenter to a focus on the learner or participant.

That trend of becoming more learner-centered is just emerging, and will change the field of lifelong learning for the rest of the century.

LERN will be researching and featuring other techniques and strategies to engage and involve learners as they evolve.  For example, LERN 2015 Annual Conference SuperStar presenter Jared Campbell will introduce several exciting new techniques in his fast moving energizing session “Motivating Digital Natives,” which will be held on the first day of the New Orleans conference, Dec. 3, 2015.

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