One of the ways a neurodevelopmental program differs from typical education is in its focus on frequency, intensity, and duration.

In a typical classroom situation, frequency is sometimes only once or twice a week, classes are often 40-50 minutes long, and lectures are not known for their intensity.  This sort of schedule is not conducive to activating the brain for optimal learning and forming new neural pathways.

By contrast, ND programs often consist of many activities that are done very frequently (one or more times per day).  We emphasize the importance of intensity in all activities.  Parents have a huge impact on intensity through their voice inflection, reaction to their students, speed, and activity scheduling.  Including other family members and surprising the student by mixing things up in a variety of ways also increase intensity.  Duration comes into play in two ways.  Most activities are done for a very short time each day.  Durations of 30 seconds, 1 minute, 5 minutes, etc. are typical.  It is very unusual for us to recommend a duration of more than 10 minutes for a single activity.  However, the activities will be normally be done over a duration of multiple months.  This combination of activities that are done for a very short time but very frequently and very intensely over the course of a number of months provide the best activation of brain activity and the best opportunity for the formation of new neural pathways.

This concept of frequency, intensity, and duration can be used by students that are not on a neurodevelopmental program with a little thought.  If a student has a page of math problems to do, they will learn much more effectively by doing math for 10 minutes or so, moving on to another subject, then coming back later to do more math, etc.  If a student has a list of spelling words to learn, they will be more effective learning them by looking at them on a card, saying each letter as they point to it, then visualizing the word in the air and spelling it again, and finally checking the card to see if they got it right than by writing them over and over again.  For some types of material, studying for a test will be more productive if you record the information to be memorized and then play that information into your dominant ear very frequently but for short durations as you go about daily activities.

So, in addition to keeping the concepts of frequency, intensity, and duration in mind as you implement your ND program, how can the same concepts be integrated into the life of the other students in your home or into your own life?!