Before Covid I was talking about the importance of sleep-breathing-calm for Neurodivergent students. Now the focus is on emotional wellbeing for everyone, these skills are even more valuable. I am running a webinar for The Bell House on Wednesday, just book here: https://bit.ly/2QWaUew
“I wish I had known more when my child was little……”………I could have saved so much pain for her and me.
Parents often say comments like this and this picture sums it up, for me. It isn’t until they get older that it becomes easier to see what is happening. Talking to your child, you realise more about your child’s experiences, but repair for years of upset is much more difficult in later life. But you can’t start again, so this is where my experience is invaluable.
I am a Forensic health and learning coach, author and trainer who is always searching for reasons behind the behaviour. In the last 20 years, I have come up with several “whys” that are key to understanding our exceptionally creative neurodivergent students. They are, in brief:
- Are you grounded, fully in your body? Gravity should be one of the first senses you experience after being born. But do you feel comfortable being grounded?
- What do you know about sleep? Newborn sleeping is often challenging but so vital to our development. Key aspects of both quality and quantity of sleep are freely available to the curious and is a lifelong skill.
- Breathing. Gentle nasal breathing reduces anxiety and oxygenates every cell in our body. Lack of brain oxygenation is a common ADHD symptom that generates hyperactivity. How are you and your child breathing?
- Mental Imagery. These are the pictures we hold in our head that are key to all learning. Those with Dyslexia/poor literacy have not developed mental images of words, essential for a language like English/American. Those with ADHD/ASD have most often uncontrolled mental imagery that is overwhelming; those with ASD would rather sit in a corner and shut out the world. There are simple skills for controlling mental imagery.
- Safety. Anxiety is overwhelming for these children and I always ask myself whether the anxiety caused the problems or whether the challenges caused the anxiety. Either way anxiety contributes to a significant lack of feeling safe. Negative emotions can jangle their energy and make them feel very uncomfortable. Add in sensitive people picking up other peoples’ energy and you have a perfect storm of sensory overload that results in meltdowns. I have learned a whole toolkit to help children and adults improve this.
- Strengths. These children have remarkable, typically highly visual, strengths but, in my experience, parents and teachers are often overwhelmed by the challenges and overlook their strengths. Learning from the experiences of older children and initially be inspired by Temple Grandin’s book, Thinking in Pictures, has enabled me to piece together this complicated jigsaw puzzle and give parents the skills to master these challenges for themselves. Items 1-5 above will allow these highly talented children to be happier, making excellent use of their visual strengths.
There is more details here in my YouTube video: https://youtu.be/njNx5v8vp4E
My name is Olive Hickmott; I would be pleased to support you in any way I can.
You are welcome to contact me firstname.lastname@example.org
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You will find other useful information at http://www.empoweringlearning.co.uk
My latest books are:
The Elephants in the Classroom: using every student’s natural power of mental Imagery to enhance learning: Neurodiversity through the lens of mental Imagery.
Bridges to Success – How to transform Learning Difficulties
#templegrandin #theelephantsintheclassroom #dyslexia #grounded #sleep #breathing #mentalimagery #safety #anxiety #strengths #energy #ADHD #ASD