As neurobiologist Carla Hannaford says, "Learning is not all in your head." It requires a body that can sit for hours in a chair, fingers that can comfortably hold a pencil, and eyes that work well as a team. These abilities (among others) are cultivated through movement and the senses.
However, in our 24/7 "wired" culture, many children haven’t received enough movement and play to naturally develop these skills. As a result, young people may come to school unprepared for the physical demands of learning.
Standard academic interventions may ask a child to respond on a level that is developmentally beyond her. In the Brain Gym approach, we back up to move forward: it starts with meeting the child where she is.
The Brain Gym method is an educational model, based on the Latin word educare, which means to “draw out.” Instead of “diagnosing and fixing” your child, we embark on a customized program to meet your goals as well as his.
We work on these intentions in a setting where learning happens through movement—it's engaging and fun. As we move toward positive change, we cultivate a sense of ease rather than the tension of over-effort and over-focus.
Sessions with Deb encompass the 26 Brain Gym activities and so much more: a variety of creative techniques that playfully build the skills of attention, balance and coordination—essential elements for success in the classroom, on the sports field, and in interactions with others.
In the course of a session, we may address retained infant and childhood reflexes. These inborn, automatic movements teach the body and the brain to mature through a series of actions that begin in utero and continue after birth. Among other skills, reflexes teach a baby to grasp an object, turn her head to look at something, and push himself up to sitting.
When reflexes don’t complete their specific tasks, we call them retained or unintegrated. Retained reflexes can keep a child’s nervous system operating in survival mode, causing challenges with learning or behavior. The good news is that reflexes can be integrated at any age, the physical skills can be taught, and Brain Gym sessions with Deb support this process.