These simple exercises are based on the work presented by Carla
Hannaford, Ph.D. . Carla Hannaford, Ph.D. is a neurophysiologist and
educator with more than 28 years of teaching experience. In her best
selling book Smart Moves, Dr. Hannaford states that our bodies
are very much a part of all our learning, and learning is not an
isolated "brain" function. Every nerve and cell is a network
contributing to our intelligence and our learning capability. Many
educators have found this work quite helpful in improving overall
concentration in class. Introduced here, you will find four basic
"Brain Gym" exercises which implement the ideas developed in Smart
Moves and can be used quickly in any classroom. They are
surprisingly simple, but very effective!
As Carla Hannaford says, "Water comprises more of the brain (with
estimates of 90%) than of any other organ of the body." Having
students drink some water before and during class can help "grease
the wheel". Drinking water is very important before any stressful
situation - tests! - as we tend to perspire under stress, and
de-hydration can effect our concentration negatively.
This exercise helps improve blood flow to the brain to "switch on" the entire brain before a lesson begins. The increased blood flow helps improve concentration skills required for reading, writing, etc.
This exercise helps coordinate right and left brain by exercising the information flow between the two hemispheres. It is useful for spelling, writing, listening, reading and comprehension.
This works well for nerves before a test or special event such as making a speech. Any situation which will cause nervousness calls for a few "hook ups" to calm the mind and improve concentration.