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Understanding the challenge

Children have to follow their own path of learning. From the age of two or three, most of the children with the means, enrol in school. Later, attend college.

Like a puzzle, the learning process contains many pieces that must ?t together in order for learning to be complete. When one or more pieces are missing, children start to experience learning challenges like confusion, frustration or lack of motivation. This often results in poor academic performance.

The key to solving a persistent learning challenge is to strengthen the children's essential cognitive skills. Cognitive skills are the mental capabilities we need to successfully learn academic subjects. Underlying cognitive skills must function well for us to ef?ciently and easily read, think, prioritise, understand, plan, remember and solve problems.

So essentially, cognitive skills are the individual mental skills we use to learn. When cognitive skills are weak, academic learning is a struggle. When Cognitive Skills are strong, academic learning is fast, easy, ef?cient and fun!

Energia SOI is an individualised learning program designed for children of all ages who are struggling to maintain academic performance or for children who want to improve their learning curve.

Learning is a complex process since the brain is such a sophisticated organ. Many interrelated cognitive skills contribute to both academic and occupational success. These skills are interdependent. Often they overlap in their work with other skills, as all the bits of information entering the mind are processed and acted upon.

Following are some basic cognitive skills, and an explanation of how each skill connects to the learning task it enables.

  1. Attention - Sustained Attention enables a student to stay on task for a period of time, Selective Attention enables a student to stay on task even when a distraction is present, and Divided Attention allows a student to handle two or more tasks at one time.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Stay on task for long periods of time
    • Ignore distractions
    • Multi-task
    Why this Matters: All of these struggles will limit a student's other cognitive skills - which will have an impact across every academic area.
  2. Working Memory - Working memory is the ability to retain information for short periods of time while processing or using it. This can be as subtle as when adding numbers that involve "holding" numbers in mind.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Remember, even simple, short instructions from one step to the next
    • Calculate multi-digit math problems in their head
    Why this Matters: Learning suffers if information cannot be retained long enough to handle it properly.
  3. Processing Speed - The rate at which the brain handles information.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Move or adjust quickly from one task or thought to another
    Why this Matters: If processing speed is slow, the information held in working memory may be lost before it can be used, and the student will have to begin again.
  4. Long-Term Memory - The ability to both store and recall information for later use. For example, the ease we have in spelling our ?rst name vs. our need for practice to spell the name of the state where we live backward.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Remember things over time
    Why this Matters: If the ability to store and retrieve information is poor, wrong conclusions and wrong answers will result.
  5. Visual Processing - The ability to perceive, analyse, and think in visual images. For example, seeing differences in size, colour, shape, distance, and the orientation of objects, and creating mental images.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Comprehend text
    • Envision stories
    Why this Matters: When visual imagery is poor, tasks like math word problems and comprehension, which require seeing the concept or object in the studentís mind, are difficult.
  6. Auditory Processing - Auditory Processing is the ability to perceive, analyse, and conceptualise what is heard and is one of the major underlying skills needed to learn to read and spell. Auditory Discrimination is hearing differences in sounds, including volume, pitch, duration, and phoneme.
    Phonemic Awareness is the ability to blend sounds to make words, to segment sounds, to break words apart into separate sounds, and to manipulate and analyse sounds to determine the number, sequence, and sounds within a word.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Spell
    • Read
    Why this Matters: If blending, segmenting and sound analysis are weak, sounding out words when reading and spelling will be difficult and error-prone.
  7. Logic & Reasoning - The abilities to reason, prioritise, and plan.

    Watch for a student's inability to:
    • Debate
    • Manage projects or school work
    Why this Matters: If these skills are not strong, academic activities such as problem solving, math, and comprehension will be difficult.

Knowing how your child learns best is the key to helping them achieve academic success and restore self-esteem and confidence! Energia SOI can help to determine what your child may be missing in areas of: -Comprehension -Memory -Critical Thinking -Problem solving -Creativity. Through personalised learning groups, your child can strengthen their ability to comprehend, complete schoolwork, homework, and become independent learner.

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"The quest of science is to provide environment around the child, so that they have everything that they need to successfully grow and learn all that they need to learn."