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Howard G. Smith, M.D. is a former radio medical editor and talk show host in the Boston Metro area.  His "Medical Minute" of health and wellness news and commentary was a regular weekday feature on WBZ-AM, WRKO-AM, and WMRE-AM.   His popular two-way talk show, Dr. Howard Smith OnCall, was regularly heard Sunday morning and middays on WBZ.

More recently, Dr. Smith has adopted the 21st century technology of audio and video podcasting as conduits for the short health and wellness reports, HEALTH NEWS YOU SHOULD USE.  Many of these have video versions, and they may be found on his YouTube page:

Trained at Harvard Medical School and a long-time faculty member at Boston Children’s Hospital, he practiced Pediatric Otolaryngology for 40 years in Boston, Southern California, and in central Connecticut.

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Please note that the news, views, commentary, and opinions that Dr. Smith provides are for informational purposes only.  Any changes that you or members of your family contemplate making to lifestyle, diet, medications, or medical therapy should always be discussed beforehand with personal physicians who have been supervising your care.

Mar 9, 2019


From the “spoonful of sugar makes the medicine go down” department, Johns Hopkins School of Education reports that the fusion of contemporary arts such as dancing, singing, rapping, and drawing into traditional science lessons increases student interest and retention of the subject matter.  The educators studied some 350 5th grade students in 6 Baltimore schools.

In this crossover study design, one group of students received the arts-enriched science class and the other group the straight science curriculum.  In the second part of the investigation, the groups were reversed.

The data demonstrated that the art-science combo lessons covering chemistry-environmental science and life science-astronomy were retained three times better than straight science instruction by those students at a basic reading level.  Those students with more advanced reading skills and academic performance derived no benefit.  I’ll bet they did have more fun.

Breathing life into potentially dry educational material on any subject is a winning strategy.  This study also suggests that the technique can help academically challenged students excel in potentially frustrating courses of study and love school a whole lot more.

#science #arts #singing #dancing #rap #drawing #healthnews

Mariale M. Hardiman, Ranjini Mahinda JohnBull, Deborah T. Carran, Amy Shelton. The effects of arts-integrated instruction on memory for science content. Trends in Neuroscience and Education, 2019; 14: 25 DOI: 10.1016/j.tine.2019.02.002