Tutoring vs. Brain Training

Exercises for the brain? There has been a lot publicized about the effects of “brain training” with research showing it can help both children and adults overcome learning and processing challenges. While there are numerous benefits to tutoring, it often serves as a short-term solution and focuses on subject material, not how the brain perceives and processes the information.

Most learning struggles impact an individual’s ability to comprehend what they are learning. This disconnect in cognitive skills, which are essential to understanding knowledge, can cause a student’s reading, math and writing skills to suffer.

Tutoring can be very effective for students who require supplemental academic support, but may not solve everything.  Think of a block of Swiss cheese.  The cheese is uniform but has many holes throughout its body.  A student requiring tutoring is much like this block of cheese.  There is a block of understanding, but like the Swiss cheese, “holes” in the understanding of the subject.  Tutoring should help fill in those holes and when successful, the student can be independent in the learning process.  However, if a student continues to have “holes” after tutoring, something else could be preventing learning from taking place.

Brain training utilizes activities and challenges specifically designed to improve visualization, sequencing, memory, attention, and problem solving abilities, – the fundamental skills required to overcome most learning struggles as well as enhancing critical thinking skills essential for success  in school and the work environment.  Much like exercise keeps your body healthy, a mix of physical and mental activities does the same for the brain. Studies have shown that individuals can improve these cognitive skills with the use of brain training.  With brain training and new found neural pathways, the “holes” in learning can quickly be filled in.

“Tutoring is focused on providing the student instruction in a particular subject, while brain training focuses on exercising the mind and reinforcing the fundamental skills a student needs to succeed,” says Learning Strategies owner Lynn Arnold.  “With regular brain training, and the subsequent application to work and studies, we can significantly improve an individual’s learning skills and turn a learning challenge into a valuable set of abilities,”

At Learning Strategies, we customize a brain training plan specific to our client’s needs.  Programs including FastForWord, Wilson Reading System, BrainWare Safari, and the Lindamood-Bell® Visualizing and Verbalizing Program®, allow students to work on attention / focus, sequencing, planning, processing speed, multitasking and long-term memory skills.  With this “brain training” and subsequent application to work and studies, sets us apart from those who only seek to tutor or provide brain training exclusively.

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