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Many children experience numerous situations in which they are tested and evaluated, be it at school by teachers or by other professionals. Entering into a testing situation often brings with it the unstated expectation that only a correct answer will be accepted. This can create anger and anxiety in children who often feel and know they are failing tests and therefore are not living up to expectations.
Dynamic Assessment recognizes that our brain can change and adapt. Intelligence is dynamic, changeable and adaptable. Intelligence is neither static nor fixed. Dynamic Assessment has introduced an interactive component to the assessment process to identify a person’s learning skills. We determine which learning skills are in place and which are (insufficiently) developed or lagging. When entering into a dynamic interaction with a child in which the thinking process is emphasized and valued, we are able to assess the lagging skills as well as the potential for learning.
Because the thinking process is valued, the child often feels validated for who he is. We work to have the child experience success and thus feel able to succeed. We strive for the shared insight that learning can be learned.
Learning to Learn
Learning challenges in school can happen to the best. The most intelligent children can experience learning difficulties. Most children will perceive themselves as being the problem. They judge themselves as not smart, become not motivated to go to school and many times give up. Their self esteem and confidence suffers badly.
Why is it that some children succeed without any problems in school and others struggle? To be an independent and successful learner one needs to have the necessary thinking skills. Thinking skills, contrary to popular belief, are not developed automatically.
In the typical school children are expected to learn spontaneously. The teacher offers the material, the child learns from what the teacher is offering. For most children this method works, for many it does not. Auditory difficulties, visual difficulties, sensory motor difficulties and many others make learning automatically challenging. Developing the thinking skills becomes hard and often impossible.
We provide children with the opportunity to experience success by developing the tools and skills. By helping them identify that it is not they themselves that are the problem. By helping them realize that successful learning does not just happen in school, but in life. By learning how to learn. But most of all, by believing in them.
Brain Stimulation Method - de Jong
Brain Stimulation Method – de Jong is an exciting and unique approach to learning, behavioral and developmental challenges, developed by Mrs. de Jong-Koutstaal of the Netherlands. In 2012 the Queen of The Netherlands awarded Mrs. de Jong knighthood in the order of Oranje Nassau, for her work with BSM de Jong and for the difference she has made in people's lives.
Childhood is a period of dramatic brain growth. Within 18 years a child grows from infancy into adulthood. Countless developmental milestones follow upon each other - from learning to crawl to walking, from babbling to learning to speak, sometimes in multiple languages.
It is not surprising that many of these developmental moments do not always progress as expected. Although every child develops at his or her own pace, delays in development can also occur. When the senses or certain parts of the central nervous system do not function efficiently or robustly enough, disturbed or delayed stimulus transfer to the brain can ensue. The result can include:
motor development progresses more slowly or milestones are skipped: rolling over, crawling, walking, difficulty learning to cycle or swim
Falling often, bumping into objects, clumsy behavior
Difficulty learning to speak reduced hearing, not listening
Tantrums or anxious behavior, not wanting to sleep in their own bed
Hyperactivity or dreaminess, ADHD, ADD
Learning difficulties: dyslexia, dyscalculia
Problems with food intake
Our personalized home-based program includes a series of daily activities and movement exercises all of which enhance the performance of the central nervous system. These exercises are prescribed after a thorough assessment taking into account hereditary and biochemical factors, birth, pregnancy, nutrition, and individual development.
“Timing is everything” is a saying we take for granted but underscores how important timing in our lives and within our nervous systems is. Our “internal clock”, responsible for detecting where sounds come from, regulating sleep and waking states, aiding our ability to focus attention, remember information, coordinate our muscles and movements, needs to beat in time. Many conditions leading to learning differences and other challenges are often the result of brain based and other physiological issues. Researchers believe these problems also impact the Brain’s internal clock and timing. Interactive Metronome therapy works by addressing this problem.
Interactive Metronome is a neuro-motor therapy which involves games like auditory and visual stimuli as well as movement exercises. The program has the individual perform a number of different exercises while listening to a beat on headphones. The individual is asked to clap each time he hears a loud “ding” while the computer tracks how accurately the claps match the sounds. The computer will give feedback to the individual, helping the individual to match his internal clock with the beat.
The movement exercises are combined with visual, cognitive, reading and memory exercises. Interactive Metronome addresses focus, attention, speech, language, coordination, gait, balance, and sensory difficulties.
The interactive metronome method has been shown to improve:
Auditory processing problems
Visual processing problems
Collaborative and Proactive Solutions
“Children do well if they can.”
All children have times when they struggle to handle life's expectations. Some children seem to have more of those times and respond in ways that are more extreme. Whether your child responds in ways that are aggressive -- hitting, kicking, screaming, swearing, biting, spitting -- or in ways that are less so -- whining, pouting, sulking, crying, withdrawing -- our goal is to identify and solve the problems that are causing these behaviors.
We do not focus only on the challenging behavior, which is the manner in which the child expresses the fact that there are expectations he has difficulty meeting. Nor do we focus only on a diagnosis, which is the categorization of a challenging behavior. Such behavior occurs when the demands and expectations being placed on a child outdo his capacity to respond adaptively.
Too often the children who need our help the most are viewed as disrespectful, out of control and beyond help. They are often the recipients of our most ineffective and punitive interventions.
Based on Dr. Ross Greene’’s work, we help the adults focus on the true factors contributing to the challenging behaviors. With this insight, we empower adults with realistic strategies to address these unsolved problems toward creating helping relationships with their children and students - relationships that solve problems proactively and collaboratively. We strive to improve communication, address the lagging skills and reduce challenging episodes. Such relationships empower the person to become an independent and successfully functioning individual in any situation and setting.
Workshops and Parent Coaching
We strive to create a workshop experience that is based on a dynamic and interactive experience. Our objective is to equip the participant with insight and ownership of his or her own learning process.
As we believe in the possibility of change for the child with whom we work, so we believe in the possibility of change with parents and collaborators.
Whether you receive feedback from a teacher, psychologist or any other professional working with your child, as a parent you are often the powerless onlooker. Feeling guilty and worried while the professional reviews your child’s performance or behavior. This is new territory and can be very disorienting. As much as you understand the conclusions, translating them to daily life often proves difficult.
We will sit with you to explain the processes underlying the behaviors described by the professional. We will develop strategies with you to use in meeting the daily expectations of your child.
A common response in our coaching sessions is, “That’s right, I always see her behave in that way in such and such a situation.” Simply said, you will recognize your child in the feedback and that change is possible.
This is the beginning point of coaching and collaboration. You, the parents of the children we work with are our partners – these are your children!!! It has been our experience that the parent who understands the process is an empowered partner in that process. This is our goal in parent coaching: for you to understand your child’s challenges and gain the tools to help your child.
We are able to call upon the experience base of our staff and guest speakers to provide a stimulating and informative workshop experience.