FOUNDATIONS Learning Program
Learning Support for our Students: the Foundations Learning Program is an elective program that provides comprehensive academic support for students with learning challenges.
The Foundations Learning Program is an elective program that provides comprehensive academic support for students with learning challenges looking for alternative treatments. While any student with a learning challenge can benefit from the Foundations Learning Program (FLP) services, the majority of students enrolled in the FLP exhibit high incidence disabilities, such as learning disorders and AD/HD.
The goal of the Foundations Learning Program is to assist the student in developing more effective learning strategies to reach his full potential as a self-directed learner. The Foundations Learning Program instructor builds a strong relationship with the student through appreciative listening and helps him to explore and understand how he learns. Daily sessions with the Learning Program Instructor are designed to promote independent learning through individualized tutorials that emphasize learning strategies, organizational skills, time management and self-advocacy.
The Foundations Learning Program includes:
- Daily meetings with an FLP instructor
- Monitoring student progress regularly and communicating with the student’s teachers
- Test preparation, test-taking strategies and testing accommodations
- Helping students identify preferred learning styles and applying effective methods
- Helping students plan for effective time management
- Encouraging self-advocacy skills
- Providing strategies for effective note-taking, studying, etc.
- Providing and/or recommending assistive technology as needed
Are you considering an ADHD boarding school for your son? Discover how Grand River Academy's Foundations Learning Program delivers alternative treatments for ADHD.
Cognitive Remediation in the Foundations Learning Program:
Grand River Academy is dedicated to utilizing best practices in educating high school boys. Grand River Academy instituted an exciting inclusion to the Foundations Learning Program curriculum. To build a stronger cognitive base in order for learning strategies to be incorporated, the Foundations Learning Program added a cognitive remediation component to its curriculum. Cognitive remediation helps to build the brain connections that are insufficient to allow interventions to work. The Foundations Learning Program is employing the principles of educational kinesiology--moving the body with intention. Practicing specific movements of the body can lead to optimal learning by making up for deficits in an individual's developmental process, or re-patterning of an inefficient neurological wiring system.
To appreciate the concepts involved with educational kinesiology, it is necessary to have a simplistic understanding of the human brain. The brain is made up of many parts, and it is divided into two hemispheres, left and right, which are connected by a bunch of nerves called the corpus callosum. Each hemisphere has special functions associated with it, but to operate successfully for learning, these hemispheres need to function simultaneously, or to communicate effectively with each other. One can think of an inefficient wiring system by visualizing the following analogy: Information coming into the brain can be thought of as the flow of traffic on a busy highway; in order to be successfully processed and remembered, this information must cross the “bridge” (corpus callosum) between the left and right hemispheres. An individual with inefficient wiring experiences a “bridge out” at the crossing, and struggles with successful information processing. Once the bridge is sufficiently structured, then the foundation is in place for further interventions/learning strategies to stick. The premise of educational kinesiology is that the connections of left and right hemispheres can be encouraged and strengthened through a series of specific physical movements which teach the parts of the brain to work as a synchronized whole, and thus to improve mind function.
Practicing exercises for cognitive remediation and addressing executive functioning skills takes time, does not refer to any specific methodology or gains in any specific course, but will ultimately help the student find academic success across the board. The Foundations Learning Program is combining exercises from models of Sensory Integration (SI) and Brain Integration Therapy (BIT) which are similar to those of Brain Gym. Daily, approximately one-fourth of the Foundations Learning Program class time will be dedicated to cognitive training, which will include physical and mental activities. The remainder of class time will be used for assistance with academic tasks (homework assistance, test-taking, organization, etc.)