There is a little longer answer, too. I really love the neurodevelopmental approach – for two reasons:
First, labels do not matter. As you look around the website, you’ll see a lot of labels. The vast majority of the ‘How We Help’ page is dedicated to a list of labels that kids often come to us with. There are articles in the ‘Resources’ section about using the ND approach with kids with a variety of labels. If you decide to have an evaluation, we will ask if your child has been given any labels. However, all that talk about labels really doesn’t matter. It just makes communication easier.
Regardless of what labels your child has been given or whether they haven’t been given any labels at all, the evaluation process will be exactly the same. We will evaluate where your child is currently in each of 6 developmental areas. Tactility, Auditory, and Visual are the three areas of Sensory Input and Fine Motor, Language, and Gross Motor are the three areas of Motor Output. Once we know where they currently are in each of those areas, we will design a series of activities designed either to complete a neurodevelopmental stage the child is doing but could do better or to help the child advance to the next neurodevelopmental stage in each area. You will then go home and do those activities with your child for the next four months. When you come back, we’ll (very excitedly) start all over evaluating them in each of the six areas to see what advances have been made and what we can work on next.
I always knew I loved this aspect of neurodevelopment (that labels don’t matter), but I almost cried the day my oldest son, Paul, heard me explaining the ND approach to another curious friend as I started training to become a ND. That day Paul realized that most of the kids we work with have some kind of issue with learning. After the conversation was over and Paul and I were alone, he said, “Mom, did I have some kind of issue with learning?” He was 23, a college graduate, and engaged to his gorgeous wife-to-be, Emily – and didn’t know he’d struggled. He thought our neurodevelopmental program was just some weird form of home schooling we’d chosen!
The best thing about the neurodevelopmental approach, though, is that solves the underlying problem. In my former life (BK – before kids), I was an industrial engineer. Industrial engineers make systems more efficient, work better. We fix stuff. So, it had never made sense to me that in this area of kids that struggle with learning, we work so hard to change the environment to fit the child (make accommodations) or drug the child to change their behavior. The day I met our awesome neurodevelopmentalist, Marcia Blackwood, I realized the ND approach was designed to fix the problem. ND’s figure out what neurodevelopmental stages a child missed or hasn’t completed and are, therefore, holding them back from learning the way kids typically do. We go back, figure out what the problem is, and fix the problem, allowing the child to become all God created them to be.
Why am I a neurodevelopmentalist? To help other families change their loved one’s life the way Marcia changed ours.
Why neurodevelopment? Because labels don’t matter and it solves the underlying problem.