Tuesday, November 07, 2006

Teachers Plus Parents Equals Learning

Been gone for a few days so no posts.

Just got back to my office at the foot of snow-covered Chair Mountain yesterday after teaching Brain Gym in Manitou Springs, Colorado. (Manitou Springs also sits at the foot of a snow-covered mountain: Pikes Peak.)

Welcome surprise in Manitou when a bunch of folks showed up at the door, and we scurried to make sure they'd get workbooks and handouts. I'd xeroxed extras but not enough. I love it when this happens.

We had teachers AND parents (several occupational therapists and paraprofessionals, plus a literacy coach). A couple of teachers even brought their grown daughters who are Moms themselves.

It's the mix of teachers and parents together that works for kids. Now the parents can reinforce what the teachers use. Obviously, in this case it's Brain Gym.

So now when 3rd grader Brian comes home and announces he needs to do "Lazy 8's" before doing his reading homework, his Dad knows what he's talking about and can do it with him.

Involving parents in the process is certainly a brain-based learning strategy.

So how'd we get parents involved?

First the school invited them to a free evening pizza party (food is a great motivator) where I showed them a bit of Brain Gym they could use not only to help their kids but for themselves too.

Then the Manitou Springs School District sponsored a one-day workshop (coffee, donuts, and bananas provided), charging a measly $25.

It worked. Your PTA or school administration can do the same thing. Just don't forget the food!

But you don't wait for your school to sponsor Brain Gym. Start learning how to use it tomorrow night. The Brain Gym Basics TeleChat series for parents and teachers starts Wednesday, November 8 at 6:00 pm mountain time.

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