Homeschooling in the times of COVID-19? Forbrain has you covered!
Helping your children progress with Forbrain
For the past couple of months, the COVID-19 pandemic has confronted us all with an unprecedented situation: social distancing, working remotely, homeschooling... unique circumstances which require a completely new organization, and it’s not always easy to stay calm and confident…If your child is facing learning difficulties, this may add some stress or make you feel irritated.
This might be a good opportunity to try Forbrain out!
When used a few minutes per day to work on school assignments, Forbrain is a very simple tool to use which can definitely help parents support their child with homeschooling challenges. Forbrain’s benefits can be seen almost instantly!
Many parents currently express the difficulties they face whilst trying to get their child to focus and concentrate, in this very unique context that is homeschooling. By getting involved in their child’s academic learning much closer than ordinarily, parents may realize the difficulties that their child is facing at school. In addition, this change of environment also tends to distract children and may hurt their motivation to get homework done. The lack of clear structure also creates a lack of orientation: working in one’s bedroom or living room instead of a classroom, alone in front of a computer without benefiting from the group energy at school, with mom or dad and not with their usual teachers etc…
How does it show?
Your child finds it difficult to get to study, you need to negotiate with him indefinitely, get angry or even threaten to ground him to get him to start working; and sometimes after 20 minutes (or less), he’ll lose his focus, start daydreaming and you need to help him get focused again, constantly check that he’s moving forward with his assignments and not just pretending… Actually, his lack of interest, the effort it requires, or the change of settings are preventing him from sustaining his attention and focusing on the task.
What does attention have to do with the ear?
Our ability to remain attentive depends on our general state of alertness and concentration, so that our nervous system can continue to be receptive to the information it has to process. This level of alertness is mostly supported by the ear and its ability to eliminate distractions, to maintain a high-quality and enduring listening experience. It is well known that a sustained level of attention allows one to think clearly, be more productive or better memorize a statement.
Forbrain is a tool that activates cortical stimulation through the voice: it accentuates the contrasts of timbre and intensity of the voice to surprise the brain and thus regularly “awaken” it. It thus enables the brain to develop automatic mechanisms to detect changes which result in increased attention, concentration, and memorization.
When a child reads or learns a lesson with Forbrain, he is first challenged by what he hears: unexpected changes in intensity depending on the words he utters or the modulations of his voice. These changes prevent him from releasing his attention by constantly surprising the brain. It is like a game to which the ear clings and with it the child’s attention span. As the sessions progress, you feel that your child remains attentive for longer, concentrates better on his task, is more motivated on his studies. It’s a virtuous circle: the fewer difficulties he encounters, the less reluctant he is to get on with it...
This is another major challenge for a parent who is not trained in teaching methods or who does not have a lot of time to devote to schoolwork at home. A child who stumbles over words, who is reluctant to read, who sometimes doesn’t even understand what he is reading, will also tend to lose motivation, as he is not stimulated by the classroom atmosphere or the teacher’s teaching tools and approach. This is often a great cause of anxiety for parents who know how much fluent reading is an essential prerequisite for all the child’s subsequent learning.
How is the ear involved?
Even in the case of silent reading, visual decoding is not enough; it is supported by the ear, which ensures good auditory discrimination, phonological awareness, and rhythmic perception of sentences. When a child reads out loud, he is involved in a natural process known as the “audio-vocal loop”: his or her verbal fluency is mechanically conditioned by the way his or her ear assimilates and analyses the sound information it receives. In other words, if your child is unable to read fluently, his or her audio-vocal loop is probably not functioning optimally.
Forbrain is a bone-conduction headset that allows the user to get instant, amplified feedback of his own voice. At the same time, thanks to its dynamic filter, it amplifies the high frequencies of the voice and simultaneously decreases the low frequencies, bringing a clearer and more precise perception of the spoken words. It is therefore a tool to optimize the audio-vocal loop, which allows you to stimulate your listening capacities with your own voice and improve your voice thanks to the ear.
When reading with Forbrain, the child receives a better feedback of his voice and expression. In return, and according to the principles of the audio-vocal loop, he spontaneously improves his reading, gaining in verbal fluidity, body relaxation and breathing rhythm. Hearing his/her voice with more clarity leads to better reading skills.
At first, the child is surprised to hear himself. He hesitates to speak or read, as if intimidated by his own voice. Then very quickly, he gets into the game, finding pleasure in modulating his intonations, in putting rhythm in his phrasing, in making vocal effects. Getting used to reading out loud, he structures his reading better, finds better reference points in the words, gains in ease and endurance. He understands what he reads better, analyses it better and memorizes it better. The child becomes more independent, needing less support in reading and less training and support from a parent.
If Forbrain doesn’t solve all problems, it can be an excellent support for parents and children in these times, during which home-schooling challenges our patience and creativity.
Wouldn't it be great if your children could actually have gained something during these homeschooling times?
Thank you for reading!
Aline is a speech coach based in Paris, France. She has worked extensively with her clients using Forbrain in her daily sessions.