Right brain training has been building up popularity in recent years. If you have not yet heard of right brain training, you may have heard of enrichment classes like the Heguru Method or the Shichida Method. Today, there are so many other private education centres out there that focus on right brain training. Most of them have very similar curriculum. So, before deciding on whether to send your child to such schools, you may be interested to know more about what right brain training is about. Here goes!
What Is Right Brain Training and Why Do we Do it?
As the name suggests, right brain training is the training of the right brain. You may ask, why must we do right brain training in particular? Not left brain training or whole brain training? Why right brain? In the Singapore context, the education system focuses a lot on developing the left brain. Therefore, there is no need for private enrichment classes to focus much on that. The right brain is the part of the brain that helps us absorb huge chunks of information at high speed. (This ability will definitely be highly appreciated during the last two weeks coming to exams period!) It is observed by some of these school founders that a child’s brain develops mostly before 6 years old. After that, the brain grows much slower. Therefore, right brain training is very important for children below 6 years old. Some schools even cover pre-natal right brain training! When right brain training is done, more connections are formed in a child’s right brain, causing the brain to be able to perform better after 6 years old.
Right brain training also helps to improve the connection with the left brain. When the right brain links well with the left brain, the child becomes more focused and attentive.
How will my child benefit from Right Brain Training?
Right brain training is believed to help children increase attention span and focus better. Children who have gone through right brain training should also have better memory and higher level of confidence. When they enter formal education in Primary school, they are supposed to be able to learn faster. In fact, most of the right brain schools today are already covering Primary school syllabus in their teaching materials. For example – planets memory; periodic table; multiplication, etc. As such, right brain kids are basically just re-learning by the time they formally learn these topics in Primary School. Some right brain kids are also expected to develop better intuition. Part of the right brain curriculum actually includes ESP (Extra Sensory Perception), sixth sense in another words. The children are made to guess the pictures behind cards, or what their parents are thinking about.
What do schools do in Right Brain Training?
Speed learning (and teaching) is the backbone of right brain training. Right brain training will involve jamming a child with a lot of information and activities at high speed. This will stimulate and work the muscles of the right brain. Flash cards would be one of the tools used in these schools. These flash cards move at speed at or below 1 second. Puzzle games like tangrams are also commonly used. Expect memory activities (many of such may involve very difficult words like “Triceratops”, or poems recitation. Topics from Primary school and Secondary school curriculum will also be introduced to your preschooler in right brain training. Some right brain schools involve guessing in their training. You may think it redundant (doesn’t it sound like mere gambling or playing the jackpot? Are our kids supposed to be able to guess the next 4D number that strikes after the training?). The reason is that these right brain schools believe that children by nature have very strong sense of intuition, and they want to retain this sense through training.
One of the common traits of right brain training would be regular practice time with parents at home. Right brain training believes that parents should lovingly guide their children and spend time with them at home in their daily practice. So, do not fully depend on the school to help your child grow. Even though you paid a hefty fee for right brain training for your child, you still need to do your homework with your child every day!
Do Right Brain Training Work All the Time?
Over the years, some parents who have brought their children to right brain training since young have provided positive feedback. Some of the outcomes mentioned include ability to learn faster in Primary School and better focus. However, not every parent of right brain kids have raving reviews about such training. Some still give credit to other factors for their children’s ability to perform well in school. Some children turned out to be just average, as opposed to those exaggerated outcomes boasted by many of these schools in their marketing materials. The industry is still young and no one can say for certain that right brain training has an impact on a child’s academic performance.
Decisions Decisions – To Sign up or not
It’s a gamble, honestly. Many parents sign their kids up for right brain training because it is an irreversible process. Once your child’s brain is developed, it’s too late (or so they say). However, it is not at all cheap in terms of time and money, as well as brain juice for the accompanying parent! If you are still entertaining doubts about right brain training, hold on and stay tuned for our next article – “What the Skeptic Says about Right Brain Training”.