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Chewing gum helps Swedish students learn

Clara Guibourg · 9 Oct 2011, 15:49

Published: 09 Oct 2011 15:49 GMT+02:00

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The National Union of Teachers in Sweden (Lärarnas riksförbund) are not impressed, however, and call the decision to allow classroom chewing "offensive" to teachers, according to a report in newspaper Aftonbladet.

The school allows chewing gum in certain middle school classrooms, and the permit is dependent on both students' and parents' approval. Only sugar-free gum is permitted.

The school claims the gum improves students' performance in school.

"I chew maybe five or six sticks of gum every day in school, during almost all lessons except the one just before lunch," said fifth-grader Anna Ljuslinder to Aftonbladet.

"I always chew gum when we have maths or science. It makes me focus, otherwise I just sit and talk and don't hear what the teacher says," she said.

Research has proven her experience correct: studies show that chewing gum can help improve both concentration and alertness. A possible explanation for this may be that activating our jaws in a chewing motion increases blood flow to the brain.

However, the teachers' union have criticised the gum-chewing as a sub-standard way of handling the children's learning.

Story continues below…

"This is a way to de-professionalise teachers. I find this offensive to teachers as a profession," said Metta Fjellkner, chairwoman of the National Union of Teachers in Sweden, to Aftonbladet.

Clara Guibourg (clarabara@hotmail.com)

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Your comments about this article

16:03 October 9, 2011 by Mukr
Is that True,Iam i need to buy a bunch of them.Oh crap what if i chew but not GUM..their are many other things to chew---------------
16:18 October 9, 2011 by rouzi
In my opinion, it is ridiculous. In contrast to study, chewing gum totally distracts me. I cannot even imagine to sit in a class that all students are chewing gum, kind of like rumination. If somebody cannot concentrate naturally , she/he should have a problem. Then, it is better to pay a visit to a specialist to solve the problem.
17:07 October 9, 2011 by Opinionfool
There is a suggestion that the action of chewing sends an auto-response instruction to the stomach to increase gastric juices but when what is being chewed is gum nothing gets swallowed so those juices can begin to dissolve the stomach and intestines.
17:43 October 9, 2011 by jan.petras
All three of you above are idiots.
17:55 October 9, 2011 by Douglas Garner
An interesting idea! If it actually works.. who cares what the union says! On the other hand, many gum chewers are quite annoying... perhaps an introductory class in how to chew gum without looking like a cow or smacking your lips will be required. How about the CARETAKERS union? Scraping gum from under desks, floors, wood trims, restrooms, etc. is gross, and time consuming. On the other hand, perhaps this will create work for more janitors!
18:37 October 9, 2011 by northice
I chewed gum while studying for uni exams 5-6 years ago and it really helped me concentrate better!:)
18:51 October 9, 2011 by Svensksmith
Studying helps a lot, too.
21:18 October 9, 2011 by OUIJA
Next Minister of Education will be Mr. Chu ling Gum.

And he will be chewing gum day and night to train ho to deal with non-chewing gums directors and students. He will cover everybody with chewing gum.

People of Sweden. Forget the studies. Just chew gum and mathematics, phisycs and other sciences will be glued into your memory. Schools will dismiss their staff. Students will chew gum to become the next generation of Swedish Nobel Prizes.
22:06 October 9, 2011 by dizzymoe33
Maybe they should give the kids Trident sugarless gum instead of all that sugar filled bubble gum?!
00:11 October 10, 2011 by Grokh
i had friends who would study listening to music, while i need total silence or i cant focus. it varies from people to people.
05:03 October 10, 2011 by Bushyblondehead
I chewed gum while reading this article and comments, might have helped my inglish.
09:09 October 10, 2011 by Zukram97
lol rofl xD lol rofl xD
09:16 October 10, 2011 by karex
Gee, so this means my education was short-changed... :( It was strictly forbidden to chew gum in class except in one of my High School classes: turns out the teacher like to chew gum too...
09:27 October 10, 2011 by OUIJA
Who will clean all the chewing gum glued on chairs, boards, tables, doors, etc? The authorities must appoint a commision. "The Chewing Gum Cleaners"-
10:42 October 10, 2011 by StockholmSam
Given how poorly the teacher's unions have taken care of teachers and students the past two decades, I would recommend that we take what Lärarnas Riksförbund says and do the exact opposite.
13:44 October 10, 2011 by J Jack
Chewing gum is also a filthy habit that involves saliva leaving the body to be disposed of, YUK! Smoking a cigarette increases my ability to enjoy a beer or calm down after a fight. That doesn't mean I'm gonna do it! Duh! Have we forgotten the SARS outbreak or Swine Flu? Next you'll be telling me these students wash their hands every time they add or subtract a piece of gum from their gobs. I think not, Do you see people at Max or McDonalds rushing for the washroom before they eat? No. What's the point of being brighter if you're not hygenic?
15:25 October 11, 2011 by Tysknaden
Learning how to level up in "World of Warcraft" becomes easier with chewing gum. You can glue your fingers to the mouse.
17:41 October 11, 2011 by OUIJA
"To chew gum, or not to chew gum. That is the sticky question" Wrigley.
12:34 October 12, 2011 by jacquelinee
The best part is that it is so much less expensive than fruit. As another article points out, parents are resistent to sending fruit with their kids to school because of the cost. I guess 7:- for an apple for your cild is a HUGE expense.

But throw a bunch of gum intheir pocket and they will be so much smarter.

I don't see it.
19:44 October 12, 2011 by OUIJA
"Many people think Djehuty (a comedian) is just being comical as usual when he says people who chew gum might as well chew rubber tires. But there is truth to this when you understand the fact that what both gum and automobile tires have in common is that they are both made from RUBBER!

"If you're chewing gum today you are chewing rubber and plastic. That's right! The American people are so beat down that they are walking around chewing on rubber and plastic and think nothing about due to successful social conditioning and brainwashing.

Whereas chewing gum was originally made from tree sap (chicle from Mexican sapodilla trees), today's commercial gums don't have a trace of chicle in them.

"Our modern day gums or chewing gums are made up of four major ingredients: Synthetic Rubber, Plastic, Sugar, and Coloring (dye). Modern day gums are produced from synthetic polymers, i.e. styrene-butadiene rubbers and polyvinyl acetate. The final product is composed of 60% sugar, 20% corn syrup, and only 20% actual gum material.

"Did you know that nylon (as in nylon stockings) is a polymer? This should give you an idea of what you're putting into your mouth and chewing with gum.

"Today's chewing gums and bubble gums are predominantly SUGAR by volume. Seventy to eighty percent of most gums on the market today are sheer vehicles for sugar, the number one drug on the planet. Just as cigarettes are a conveyor for the addictive drug 'nicotine,' so is gum for sugar."

Read more: http://www.dherbs.com/articles/dangers-of-chewing-gum-244.html#ixzz1aYriqEUR
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