Brain Gym - Simple Body Movements to Boost Learning Process
Can physical activity or bodily movements boost learning process among kid? Are physical skills associated with learning and achievement?
I have been teaching few brain gym exercises to pre-k kids and they love doing it. These simple movements are not only fun to do but help them stay focused and be good listeners and learneres. I have noticed significant improvements in the basic skills of reading, writing, spelling, and math as well as in areas such as concentration, attention, confidence, and creativity.
Brain gym is the physical activity program to boost learning process. It helps in brain development, and therefore learning is enhanced, by certain bodily movements.
What is Brain gym?
Brain Gym is a set of 26 simple and pleasant movement activities such as "crawling, drawing, tracing symbols in the air, yawning, and drinking water" that are said to help children, adults, and seniors to:
- Learn ANYTHING faster and more easily
- Perform better at sports
- Be more focused and organized
- Start and finish projects with ease
- Overcome learning challenges
- Reach new levels of excellence
This gymnastic was invented by a couple of American researchers, Mr. and Mrs. Dennison who claim to have solved many students' problems of dyslexia and hyperactivity through the use of Brain Gym.
Recent research increasingly supports the efficiency of Brain Gym and programs like it.
The Brain Gym program is based on the concept that people are natural learners, and that learning challenges can be overcome by carrying out certain playful movements, the use of which will, over time, improve stability, mobility, and sensorimotor coordination. The Brain Gym, used by people of all ages, have been incorporated into many educational, sports, and business programs in the United States, Canada, and throughout the world. They are also widely used in British state schools.
Benefits of doing brain gym:
26 Brain Gym activities is said to foster flexibility, eye teaming, and hand-eye skills, and so "activate the brain for optimal storage and retrieval of information." Each of these activities exercises takes about a minute to do, and each of which addresses different learning skills.
Brain Gym is also designed to increase self-esteem, increase motivation, give the practitioner the ability to identify and avoid stress, increase awareness of the body, and build co-operation between practitioners. Mostly, though, Brain Gym was developed to increase relaxation and improve circulation in students. It is believed that in turn this increases their ability to retain information, as their sensory system is more active. The learnt material is also believed to be remembered better through use of this treatment.
Examples of Brain Gym
Some examples of Brain Gym exercises are:
Drinking Water — making students drink water before class is believed to increase brain function and decrease stress levels, particularly before tests
Brain Buttons — this exercise comprises of placing a thumb and forefinger on either side of the sternum, just below the collar bone, and pressing lightly in a pulse. The other hand should do a similar thing over the navel area. This is also designed to improve blood flow.
Cross Crawl — this exercise involves putting the right hand on the left knee as you raise it, and then the left hand on the right knee, like marching. This is designed to co-ordinate the two brain hemispheres; useful for spelling, listening, writing and general comprehension.
Hook Ups — this exercise involves crossing the right leg over the left ankle. Then cross the wrists and link the fingers. Bend the elbows and turn the fingers in toward the body until they are resting on the chest, then breathe slowly for a few minutes. This is intended to calm the mind and improve concentration.Few of the brain gym exerciese are brain buttons, balance buttons, cross crawl, lazy 8 etc.
Who can get benefits from brain gym?
People of all ages and abilities can get benefits from this simple bodily movement system. Though it is probably best known for its effectiveness in school classrooms, the arena for which it was first developed. Additionally, people with special needs and learning challenges benefit from the Brain Gym program by using modifications of some of the movements and activities.