Jun. 26th, 2011

mommydama: (Default)
Some friends and family have asked about this, so here it is.

I'm not sure if I ever posted about this here or not, but shortly after arriving in Kansas, Luci began the Brain Balance program. It is 36 weeks long. We were extremely fortunate in that my FIL is a supporter of the Center here in Kansas and all the pieces fell into place for us to avail ourselves of this. I'm very grateful for that. I was a bit skeptical of the whole process and concept at first, but the more testing we did on her the more I realized that Brain Balance did it ALL. They cover all the bases. It all makes sense. I highly recommend that anyone lucky enough to have a center in their area go attend one of their free informational sessions. If not, check out the books Disconnected Kids and Reconnected Kids.

So I went to Luci's first Progess Report meeting a few days ago. First of all, I was getting a tad freaked out about Luci's behavior about a week before this meeting. Regression does not even begin to cover it. Tantrums, clinginess, infantile behavior...it was scary. I was about to panic and take her for a serious psych eval, when I happened to overhear a conversation between to moms in the Brain Balance waiting room and jumped in (so rude, but what are you gonna do?) to ask them about it. They were discussing just this kind of thing and smiled knowingly when I described how Luci was acting, telling me it was all "a part of the process" of "making new brain connections." So I asked about it at the progress report meeting and the director said the same thing, that her behavior, provided the negatives go away within about two weeks, is perfectly normal for kids going through the program. Sure enough, about two weeks after it started, I'm seeing these behaviors slowing down and I'm very hopeful. Of course, the director warned me that they have these progress reports strategically placed because these are the spots where parents start freaking out. And that we will probably see more of this before she is through.

Luci's test results show she has moved up at least one "level" in just about every area. Reading comprehension and cause and effect/inferences have moved up TWO GRADE LEVELS! I'm thrilled about this and so is she. It is obvious she is enjoying reading in a whole new way.

What does this program involve? It involves strengthening the connections between the brain hemispheres as well as strengthening the "weak" side of the brain. Luci is weak on the right side. And she tested as still retaining most of her infantile reflexes. The center program includes both academic and sensory motor exercises aimed at her specific weaknesses and the home program they design does the same. Most of Luci's home program involves movement activities for the reflexes. This is apparently REALLY important to brain balance and the connections between the hemispheres. For instance, one of the exercises has her doing a crawling movement and another has her rolling into a fetal position on one side and then the other. There are also eye strengthening activities, balance and coordination, and "midline" exercises as well as upper and lower body strengthening. It is all put together for us, all the issues I could think of put together in one program.

I'm pretty sure we are on the right track. I'll try to update here about the whole process periodically.

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mommydama

January 2012

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