More than 2 million American children have been identified by schools as being learning disabled, and approximately 5 to 10 million American adults are similarly affected.
According to Harvard neurologist Norman Geschwind, practically all of us have a significant number of special learning disabilities. With the large number of tests available today, chances are one of them can detect something wrong with the way just about anyone in our society learns.
With this in mind, I think it would be better to see these as “learning opportunities” rather than “learning disabilities,” because labels limit potential.
Last night on my evening walk, I met two young men. One was in his early twenties and the other was in his late twenties. As we stood in the local historical cemetery talking, both revealed they hadn’t finished high school: a label had crippled both of them. One said he hadn’t finished high school because he had ADHD, while the other announced he hadn’t finished because he had ADD.
Over the last ten years of teaching the I Create What I Believe! (ICWIB) program, I have met hundreds of children who have shared with me their endless list of crippling and limiting labels. These labels made them feel flawed—less than—and for some, their excuse for not being successful. There is something seriously wrong when our youth feels this way.
According to Daniel Pink, in The Whole New Mind, we need to be cultivating creative, out-of-the-box thinkers. From my own personal experience, and working with many children and adults over the years, I feel learning challenges require you to be a creative, innovative thinker, because the traditional approaches to learning often don’t work. Being unable to learn in the traditional, linear manner doesn’t mean you are stupid or incapable of learning, it just means you have a uniquely wired brain, which often can do unique and wonderful things. It also means you need to explore and discover how your mind works and what helps it work best.
This is why I stress the importance of Just Scribble, the first activity in the ICWIB program. The simple act of scribbling can help a child or adult reduce stress, release bottled-up emotions, and come to know themselves in a deeper way. It can also help them move out of their subconscious or reactive mind and into their conscious mind, which is where learning takes place. Once the child or adult learns how to shift from one brain state to the other, they don’t need the crayons and paper any more. They can accomplish the same result by just drawing the pattern they discovered that works on their leg with their finger, or with their foot under the desk.
I think the information you gain from the Just Scribble activity as a secret code or password that has the capacity to unlock your mind. Once you have learned how to shift from the reactive mind to the conscious mind or the prefrontal cortex, you can then use the same activity to learn how to focus and stabilize your mind.
When I was younger I was plagued with a very long list of learning challenges. When I am stressed or over-tired, these challenges can still rise up and make learning difficult, but they no longer stop me. This is because I now know how to effectively shift brain states and I no longer see myself as “less than” or handicapped.
After only about 20 minutes of conversation last night, these two young men were no longer feeling broken, had a plan of action, and were hopeful about their future.
Now, with the Global Classroom and the ICWIB tools, you too can make a difference in your life or the lives of our youth. The reason I created the Global Classroom is because in a simple Introductory Presentation, you can learn the basic science behind the program and multiple activities to help reduce stress, release bottled-up emotions, and place your mind in a learning-ready state. The ICWIB Introductory DVD, which is downloadable, can also help you easily share some of the life- changing science behind the program with others.
In Version One, using individual hands, you can begin to identify what kinds of movements and/or kind of lines relax your mind, or energize and focus it. Version Two of the same activity can help you discover if bi-lateral movement (using both your hands simultaneously) helps you shift your brain states more effectively than individual hand movement.
I invite you to not only explore Just Scribble Version One and Just Scribble Version Two, but to also share them with at least one other person. If I can make a difference in two young men’s lives in just twenty minutes, just think what we can all do together!
If you find these activities to be helpful for you or another person, please share your stories with me.
Reminder: Thursday, September 24, 2015 at 5:00 PM PST is the next FREE ICWIB teleconference. Any individual or group that has purchased an ICWIB kit is invited to attend. Please contact Nancy Marie at: email@example.com for the dial-in number and password. The focus of this event is to review material, answer questions, and help individuals adapt activities for special circumstances.
For more information about the I Create What I Believe! program: www.ICreateWhatIBelieve.com
For more information about the I Create What I Believe! Global Classroom: http://icreatewhatibelieve.com/global-classroom/
To schedule an I Create What I Believe! Introductory Presentation in your home or community, contact Nancy Marie at: firstname.lastname@example.org
For more information about the Just Scribble activity: http://icreatewhatibelieve.com/icwib-just-scribble/
To sign-up for the FREE I Create What I Believe! Newsletter: http://icreatewhatibelieve.com/newsletter/