For many children, focusing within the confines of a traditional classroom setting can be extremely difficult and create many problems that extend beyond the classroom. This can decrease confidence levels, increase stress levels and make the child think that education is “just not their strong suit.”
Recognizing the connection between emotional wellness and learning, promotes better focus and has a direct impact on academic learning. Being bored, not performing at the level of other children or frequently being scolded can drastically affect their emotional state, making it extremely difficult to “get through to them” in a constructive and positive way.
For example, a child with ADD or ADHD may find it impossible to sit through even a 30-minute lesson in the classroom. But through the tools taught in Brain Power Wellness, they learn to manage their emotions, stress, and attention span by taking control of the situation rather than being overwhelmed by the obstacle.
Dave Beal, the Program Director for Brain Power Wellness, says, “When we are happy our brain works in a different way. This encourages engagement in education and intrinsically, children learn better and are more motivated because they have an interest rather than going through the motions. Brain Power Training promotes harmonious collaboration rather than control.”
While Dave’s work primarily focuses on helping children in and out of the classroom, his training extends to parents and teachers as well. Anyone with a brain can benefit!
Homework time can be stressful for everyone involved and things can get heated easily. By taking a “brain break” and playing a game in-between assignments or when things get a little tense, parents will not only improve their cognitive function along with their children, but also strengthen the bond with their child.
One exercise he recommends for anyone just starting out with brain games, is a classic: Rock, Paper, Scissors...but with a twist.
The twist is that each player is playing against themselves.
Before each round, choose the hand that will throw the winning play. It may sound easy at first but can get quite challenging as you speed up.
Play as normal with the “1, 2, 3, shoot” method and alternate the hand that you’ve chosen to win each round.
After you’ve played a few rounds, go faster and faster, trying to outsmart yourself. When you speed up, you will find that it becomes increasingly hard and this is when the magic happens.
Dave says when you’re using both hands and playing a very common and well-known game like Rock, Paper, Scissors against yourself, you’re thinking about it in a different way while improving your cognitive function. Your brain activates parts that it doesn't use when solving math problems or writing, and this is when new neural connections are made and strengthened.
This game also gets you laughing, connecting and forgetting about what it was that had you wound up.
When you work with the brain rather than against it, you will quickly begin to see that you are indeed in control of your thoughts, emotions and the outcome of your life. We all have a brain and it’s time to use them to their full potential.
“Where the mind goes, energy flows.”
For more brain games and activities you can use to positively impact children in the classroom and at home, check out Dave Beal’s upcoming book, Brain Power Classroom.
If you’re looking to incorporate this method into your life on a deeper level, you can become a certified Power Brain Instructor and learn directly from Dave! You can access his course, Power Brain Instructor Certification Course: Level 1 here.