You have all heard the adage that there is no bad weather, only unsuitable clothing! Well, I firmly believe that none of us have inbuilt learning difficulties, rather we are in an educational system that can make learning difficult for some of us.
Every one of us can learn. We learn to crawl, walk, and talk. Nothing that we ever have to learn at school is more complex than that. We all have innate and magnificent ability to learn, we simply need to be supported in an environment that suits our specific style of learning.
There are a few different learning styles:
Visual, aural, verbal, kinaesthetic, logical, social and solitary. You can find out more about these learning styles in this article.
Many of us learn kinaesthetically or through the creative arts. I am a visual learner and I cannot remember a person’s name until I have visually matched the energy of the name to the energy of the individual. Stories of great deeds played out by heroes only become relevant once I have watched the living story unfold in my mind's eye / imagination. Despite studying the theory many, many times over, I simply could not understand how the earth/sun/moon moved until my friend and teacher, Dr Cheryl Bartlett, first showed it to me with an orange, a tangerine and ping pong ball, and then, because it was still hovering on the edge of my understandings, walked me through it on the floor with her representing the earth, me representing the moon and a willing passerby representing the sun. At that point I understood it and have never lost that understanding, because it bridged from the head/brain knowing, into the whole-system knowing. The relationship that I have with that piece of information is now fully embodied.
We cannot underestimate the extent to which we need to have a whole-system approach to learning . I know children who have to tap on their bodies or drum their fingers on the table while they are in a classroom or learning environment; they are trying to bridge the gap between the non-kinaesthetic and kinaesthetic approaches to learning. Others need to doodle to bridge the left and right hemisphere of the brain. Others sit with their arms crossed and their legs crossed over like a noodle, attempting to hold the cross-over systems strong and resilient in the face of a difficult learning style. When I am writing these articles I love to be surrounded by noise (like a busy cafe or a train station), and if I don’t have that then I have very loud music playing. Again, the external stimulation and the vibration of the music weaves the left and right brain hemispheres together allowing me to access information in my conscious, subconscious, the collective consciousness and higher consciousness. It takes me much longer to write when I don’t have that stimuli and my writing is more flat/less vital.
Most of the approaches within the mainstream educational system appeals to left brain learning. Logical, rational, sequential, linear. This is a great way to learn if that is how you learn. And an almost impossibly dull, rigid and flat way to experience your ‘education’ if that is not the way in which you learn. For many of us (children and adults), we need creativity within the learning process.
When I sit in a classroom (of adults or children) I observe a few energetic facts...
Many individuals are energetically and neurologically disorganised before they enter the classroom.
Poor quality sleep, the effects of being around screens, foods with sugar in for breakfast, stresses at home, stresses at school; all of these greatly affect the ability to stay energetically organised and thus the ability to learn.
Even when there is good energetic organisation prior to being in the class, if the style of learning is not suited to that individual then the individual’s energy patterns first move into homolateral patterning and then into neurologically disorganisation (the cross over patterns of the brain lessen).
So, what can you do about it if you are in an educational environment that doesn't suit you because it works with left-brain models of learning?
Before you enter the learning environment (and some of these exercises are really quick and can be done several times during the day):
Remember, you not only want your energy system to be organised and coherent, you want it to be resilient as well; able to keep the patterns of health and vitality even when under stress such as trying to learn in a non-supportive learning environment.
When you are in the learning environment
Figure 8s: An effective energy technique to help you in this situation is to visualise figure 8s horizontally across your body as you are listening/watching the educator. If you are not someone who finds it easy to visualise then draw small figure 8s with your finger ( this can be in the air, on your hand, on your leg under the desk if appropriate). Make it so that one else can see the movement. If it is easier for you, you can bring a very slight weave into your body, allowing the energy of your body to move from side to side in a figure 8 pattern. This movement should be imperceptible to anyone else in the class. You can also smooth big figure 8s around the eyes. This is such an easy and natural thing to do that others in the class either don’t notice it, or don’t think anything of it.
Dragon Breath: a really effective way that I have worked with people who struggle with dyslexia / dyspraxia / dysgraphia etc is to teach them the Dragon Breath. They can do it whenever they are doing any of the energy exercises listed above, or as a standalone exercise. After only a few days the whole energy system picks up, the neurological processing abilities cross over and come into balance. We can use this technique when in the classroom situation, you can simply move into Dragon Breath and have the energetic patterns remain vibrant and able to process the information.
After you leave the learning environment:
Ground: if your energy is scrambled or disorganised then it is most important that you ground. This may be through any of the grounding exercises discussed in other blogs, by running around, stamping your feet or being outside in nature. That is why having children play outside in the playground between lessons is so very important.
If you still don’t feel you have organisation or clarity in your whole-body system then:
Wayne Cook exercise (with Dragon Breath)
Activating the Cells as soon as you leave the classroom if you are someone who feels very frustrated or deflated after being in a learning environment
Two more things to mention:
Sugar greatly increases the likelihood of becoming neurologically disorganised.
I have often seen children who are very neurologically disorganised come into clarity and organisation when they are around animals. A great reason to have an animal friend in your life or your child’s life.