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Activities that Strengthen the Right and Left Sides of the Brain

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The Brain Balance Program® for children with ADHD, processing disorders and other neurological disorders is grounded in the idea of neuroplasticity, that shows that the brain is remarkably adaptable and able to create new neural pathways in response to stimulus in the environment. We believe imbalances associated with a wide range of learning disorders and neurobehavioral issues are, therefore, often correctable.

The following activities and exercises come from Dr. Robert Melillo’s book Disconnected Kids. They promote balance between the left and right hemispheres of the brain and encourage whatever side that may be weaker to strengthen thereby improving symptoms of ADHD, learning disorders and other neurobehavioral disorders of childhood. Our online assessment can help provide some insight into your child’s functional strengths and weaknesses.

Sensory Motor

Activities that Strengthen Sensory Motor Skills in the Right Brain

  • Smell Game (page 157): Stimulate sense of smell and have your child guess the scent (blindfolded) using strong scents such as black pepper, coffee and lemon in the right nostril only to help children with right brain weakness become open to new and varied foods.
  • Musical Brain Balance (page 167): Have your child listen to music that most accentuates the musical qualities that are processed by the right side of the brain such as harmonious pieces in pieces like “March Militaire” by Schubert (see pages 166-170 for complete list).  Use an ear plug to block the right ear during this exercise.
  • One Foot In Front of the Other (page 174): Have child wear one sock on right foot and then stand straight, eyes open with feet together and move one foot directly in front of the other. The child must then remain still without falling or leaning for 30 seconds. Once child can do this successfully 4 sessions in a row, move on to the next exercise (see book page 174).

Activities that Strengthen Sensory Motor Skills in the Left Brain

  • Smell Game (page 157): Stimulate sense of smell and have your child guess the scent (blindfolded) using pleasant scents such as banana, lavender and chocolate in the left nostril only to help children with left brain weakness become open to new and varied foods.
  • Musical Brain Balance (page 167): Have your child listen to music that most accentuates the musical qualities that are processed by the left side of the brain such as rhythmic pieces from in pieces like “Piano Concerto in B Minor” by Tchaikovsky (see pages 166-170 for complete list). Use an ear plug to block the left ear during this exercise.
  • One Foot In Front of the Other  (page 174): Have child wear one sock on left foot and then stand straight, eyes open with feet together and move one foot directly in front of the other. The child must then remain still without falling or leaning for 30 seconds. Once child can do this successfully 4 sessions in a row, move on to the next exercise (see book page 174)

Academic

Activities that Strengthen Cognitive Skills in the Right Brain

  • Inferential Comprehension Exercise (page 205): Using any book at your child’s reading level, read a passage out loud to child and then provide a multiple-choice question that asks child to differentiate between what is true, what is false and what is an inference.
  • Eye Movement Exercise (page 209): Stand face-to-face with your child. Hold up both of your hands so one is in the visual field of each of your child’s eyes. Ask your child to look you in the eye. Tell him that when you wiggle a finger of one hand, he should look at the opposite hand. Wiggle your right hand more so that your child will look left. Do this a total of ten times.

Activities that Strengthen Cognitive Skills in the Left Brain

  • Literal Comprehension Exercise (page 205): Using any book at your child’s reading level, read a passage out loud to child and then ask a multiple-choice question related to specific details from the passage.
  • Eye Movement Exercise (page 209): Stand face-to-face with your child. Hold up both of your hands so one is in the visual field of each of your child’s eyes. Ask your child to look you in the eye. Tell him that when you wiggle a finger of one hand, he should look at the opposite hand. Wiggle your left hand more so that your child will look right. Do this a total of ten times.

More of these brain balancing exercises and activities can be found in Dr. Robert Melillo’s book Disconnected Kids.

In addition to the above sensory motor and academic components, our program combines a third core modality, nutrition. The Balance 360 Clean Eating Nutrition System is a step-by-step approach designed to help parents progressively remove foods that contain gluten, refined sugar, and dairy. These foods are known to react with the imbalanced brain, leading to food sensitivities and inflammation, causing negative behaviors, physical symptoms, and learning challenges.

Each of these three pillars of brain development plays an important role in improving a child’s ability to learn and behave at an age-appropriate level.

To schedule an assessment for your child, or to learn more about how the Brain Balance Program can help, contact us online or find a center near you.


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