Organizing Einstein: Enhancing the Abilities of the Gifted Learner Part 2

gifted learnerOrganizing Einstein: Enhancing the Abilities of the Gifted Learner

Part Two – with Dr. Jan Bedell

In part two, the Brain Coach continues the workshop on staying ahead of that voracious appetite for new ideas and expanded content that comes with a gifted learner.  Additionally, the concept of teaching with frequency, intensity and duration to accelerate learning and make academics more effective is expanded in part two.

In this podcast, we will discuss the importance of all learning channels working well because each channel is designed to process particular types of information.  For example, the best channel for math facts is the auditory system.  After listening to the podcast, you will understand why today’s children are having such a hard time learning their math facts because of our cultural practice of drill without giving enough input.  The Rapid Recall System for mastery of math facts makes math assignments easier and changes mental math abilities for gifted, typical or struggling learners for a lifetime.

Look for examples of Montessori-inspired unit studies to improve general knowledge, visual discrimination, and reading skills.  For example, teaching around a common theme like animals of a certain country or region can expand to include geography, climates, science and more. Pictures of these unit study projects are included in your handout.

Learn how simple activities can accelerate auditory and visual processing (short term memory) and aid an already gifted child to higher functional ability. Storing information in the correct hemisphere of the brain makes for quick retrieval. Two specific ways that information gets to long term memory, visualization and conceptualization, are brought to light during this session. Included in this discussion are ways to improve visualization specifically (see handout). 

Don’t miss the handout attached here with links to pertinent information and discounts.

Organizing Einstein: Enhancing the Abilities of the Gifted Learner Part 1

The Gifted Learner with Dr. Jan Bedell

When your child has an above average IQ, you have a whole new set of challenges.  Staying ahead of that voracious appetite for new ideas and expanded content can definitely keep a home school mom hopping. The goals for podcast #26 (part 1) and #27 (part 2) are:

  1. Equip you with information that can cut teaching time and accelerate academic results.
  2. Explain the concept of Input vs Output
  3. Give you the Three Keys to Learning, ANYTHING
  4. Give you another opportunity to THINK DIFFERENTLY!

As a home school mom you have a great desire to have children who:

  • Read Well/Comprehend
  • Are Great at Math
  • Stay on Task
  • Follow Directions
  • Become Independent Learners

The premise of the NeuroDevelopmental Approach for Life is that to have these abilities one needs a foundation of organized brain function. This is the only way the full potential of the gifted learner can be realized.  All people, including the highly intelligent, need a brain that works efficiently to realize their maximum potential. This is possible when ones’ brain is organized well so that it can receive, process, store and use information proficiently.

In this podcast, you will hear how the brain is organized and the importance of making sure all learning channels are working well. This is important for bringing in information (what happens when one is learning) in the most efficient way possible. Dr. Jan will discuss aspects of the tactile channel, including how to make handwriting easier, as well as what information is best brought in through the visual channel.

Be sure to tune in next week for part two that will include the auditory learning channel.

Don’t miss the handout attached here with links to pertinent information and discounts.

Handout Number – #26

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Special Needs Homeschooling 101

special needs homeschooling 101Do you have a child with special learning needs?  While every child is unique and needs specialized attention, some seem to require more. They struggle to progress through typical milestones and traditional curriculum and approaches don’t seem to help them much.  They have learning, behavioral or emotional struggles or have received labels like Sensory Integration Disorder, autism, dyslexia, ADD/ADHD, dysgraphia, dyscalculia, bi-polar disorder, Down Syndrome and a myriad of other syndromes. Included in this mix are acronyms like PDD, OCD, CAPD, ODD. Oh my, what is a parent to do?

In this podcast, you will learn of my dilemma of how to help our oldest daughter, Jenee’ who was born with special needs.  God’s providence brought me to The NeuroDevelopmental Approach and changed both of our lives.  Unaware that homeschooling even existed, a move to Dallas, TX and attending a new church brought that possibility to my family in 1986 when homeschooling was still illegal in many parts of the US.

No matter where you are in your journey with your special needs child, whether you are just now considering home school for this special person in your life or are a veteran, all need encouragement and equipping past the current knowledge level.  Be assured that God will show you the way; he will equip you as he calls you.

Fear can be one of the biggest battles for a mom of a special needs child. What does the future hold for this child? What if people make fun of him or misinterpret his action? What will happen when I am not here to help her? Will friends be a part of his life? How do I afford all these therapies that she needs? As you listen this week, I hope to encourage you as well as give you ways to cast that fear aside.

This podcast, sponsored by Little Giant Steps, contains some specific strategies and curriculum recommendations to make life easier for you and your child.  I will share my story of how I laughed more and cried more over my special child than anything else in life, plus how to:

  1. See what God might be doing in you through the experience of having a special needs child
  2. Create and celebrate every small step along the way
  3. Keep yourself encouraged
  4. Equip yourself for success through The NeuroDevelopmental Approach for Life

Don’t miss the handout attached here with links to pertinent information and discounts.

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Homeschool Success with Your Struggling Learner

Homeschool Success With Your Struggling LearnerHomeschool Success with Your Struggling Learner with Dr. Jan Bedell

It seems more and more children these days have some sort of learning struggle that challenges their academic progress or gives them one of the common learning or behavioral labels like ADD/ADHD, dyslexia, dyscalculia, OCD, bipolar, Asperger’s and the list goes on.   It is estimated that 1 in 5 US children suffer with a learning challenge, so you are not alone if you have a child that needs help for reading comprehension, help with math or has word recognition or other academic struggles.

As you may be experiencing, educating a child that is struggling academically, emotionally or behaviorally can be a real challenge. Sometimes when you are out there, seemingly alone as a homeschool mom, you can even start to doubt yourself and wonder if you are equipped for the job.  After all, the educators may have told you that you should let the professionals handle things.   Let me assure you, your precious little one is in the right place, at home!  If you are just now considering homeschooling your struggling learner, I highly encourage you to do so.

Topics discussed in this podcast:

  1. School staff often recommend more one-on-one instruction for children that are struggling.  Brain Coach Tip – The best place to receive that extra attention is at home where love abounds.
  2. Often the suggestion is to label the child with a learning disorder. Brain Coach Tip – It is better find out what is causing the symptoms and address those directly instead.
  3. When parents are equipped with the right information, the sky is the limit to where their struggling learner can go.
  4. Giving input to the child instead of frustrating them by expecting so much output is important.
  5. The NeuroDevelopmental Approach for Life really does apply to all ages. It’s simply never too late!
  6. If you are new to Brain Coach Tips, you will find useful information in podcasts #17 &18 about root causes of reading and math struggles. In #15 & 16 discover answers for attention issues, and in 20, 21, and 22 you will receive answers for sensory challenges. Many of these issues are the root cause of labeling and medicating children. Changing the brain’s function through specific stimulation can avoid all that and secure the functional results you are looking for.
  7. Discover ways to make your homeschool a “no more tears, learning zone.”
  8. Acquire a strategy to change the atmosphere in your home from negative to positive.
  9. Find out why your child might not be seeing correctly even though his eyes check out as 20/20.
  10. Additionally, learn the reason why your child may get stressed with a test and often can’t remember what you know that he knows.

Helping you reach far beyond the limits of labels, learning struggles, and their negative effects is our goal at Little Giant Steps. You as a homeschool mom can open a brilliant future for your child through understanding how the brain works . . . or why it doesn’t currently seem to be working so well.

Click Here for Show Handout!

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UPDATED: You Knew It Yesterday – What Happened on the Test?

You Knew It Yesterday - What Happened on the Test?You Knew It Yesterday – What Happened On The Test with Dr. Jan Bedell

Have you ever had that frustrating experience where you were certain your child grasped an academic concept, and then the very next day, she couldn’t recall ever seeing it? Well, it is not just a frustration for you.  The child is often upset as well.  In this episode, Dr. Jan tells her story of inconsistent recall and the frustration it caused her after studying hard only to be unable to recall the information when under the pressure of a testing situation.  The NeuroDevelopmental Approach to life can change all that if you are willing to think differently about education. The brain controls everything that you do. Thus, when you’re applying a solution for a learning challenge, the brain is where you must start. The brain needs to be organized like a container built for storing information instead of a sieve-like structure where everything leaks out. Many children miss developmental steps for good organization of the brain. The good news is that a child who is struggling to learn or who has a learning label like ADD, ADHD, dyslexia, Asperger’s or Autism can go back and develop this part of the brain.


Not only must the brain have a good, organized foundation, but it also needs a well-developed auditory and visual short term memory.  For more information on how strategic auditory processing is to overall function, refer back to podcast #14. These functional abilities include: staying on task, maturing to a proper level, socially appropriate interactions, following directions, comprehending and more. A link to free test kits for auditory and visual processing are in the handout below.


After the initial part of the brain’s foundation is established, the next area to consider is dominance.  As neurodevelopmentalists we consider having the same side dominance for hand (you must start here because the hand is genetically predisposed to be left or right),  eye, ear and foot to be most efficient when it comes to retrieving what you have learned. If  a person does not have same side dominance (for example, they are right handed but left eyed or eared or both), one of the most common symptoms is inconsistent recall. One day they know the information and the next day they don’t.  Other symptoms that sometimes accompany mixed dominance include: lack of an analytical thought or logic, extreme emotionality, erratic behaviors, anxiety (test or otherwise), phobias, depression and shyness.  People with mixed dominance often have low self-esteem as many things seem difficult and they relate it to intelligence or lack thereof instead of inefficiency in the brain that can be changed.

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The handout with this episode will give you the progression of neurodevelopmental programs that can make learning easier and retrieval of information second nature.  Even beyond that, The NeuroDevelopmental Approach to Life can be effective for more involved situations like those with syndromes (Down, Williams, Fetal Alcohol…) as well as sensory integration issues.


Don’t miss the handout attach here with links to pertinent information and discounts.Click Here for Show Handout!

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Thanks to our Network Sponsor

Sony Pictures: and the latest movie with great values and message – Smurfs: The Lost Village.

smurfs movie the lost village

Click here for the FREE Faith-based Movie Guide!

Photo Credit: DepositPhoto 2017 All Rights Reserved. @Copyright MyBaitShop

Stop Twirling That String

stop twirling that stringStop Twirling That String with Jan Bedell, PhD

Visual challenges can be varied and sometimes hard to detect, but often mom or dad know something isn’t quite right. The challenge is to figure out what is causing the problem.  The doctor might say, “The child’s vision is fine.”  The question from a neurodevelopmentalist standpoint is, would the doctor be talking about 20/20 acuity (able to see up close and far away) or vision (the way the visual information is interrupted by the brain in giving the visual message)?

See if you recognize any of these symptoms of visual inefficiencies:

  • Are you constantly saying, “Look at me when I am talking to you” but the child doesn’t seem to be able to maintain eye contact?
  • Are there challenges with coloring within the lines or writing on the line or with writing letters that are the same size?
  • Is the child too close to the reading material or math page when doing academics?
  • Does the child skip lines or small words when reading?
  • Does the child like to watch things that twirl or move like fan blades or toy car wheels?
  • How about constantly wanting to dangle something like a string, sock, or anything else he can find to whirl and watch?

Discover more about The NeuroDevelopmental Profile as it relates to vision and visual distortions in this Brain Coach Tip episode.  There are seven main developmental levels that all children should go through.  Some of these areas of development are compromised by our cultural practices of putting our infants in gadgets such as walkers, swings and jump-ups. When we don’t go through the correct stages where vision is developed, challenges can occur.  The good news is that we don’t have to focus on the symptoms that can be on the checklists for labels such as Autism, ADD/ADHD or Sensory Integration Disorder.  We can find the root cause of the symptoms and change the child’s function, thus eliminating the symptoms all together.  

Don’t miss the handout attached here with links to pertinent information and discounts.

Click Here to View the Handout for this show.

Stop Overreacting It’s Just A Sock

stop overreacting its just a sockStop Overreacting It’s Just A Sock with Jan Bedell, PhD – your brain coach.


Do you ever want to just yell, “IT’S JUST A SOCK, put it on your foot!”? It is hard to understand the reaction of some children when their tactile system is giving the wrong messages to the brain. The sensory system is the gateway to overall function. You first have to get the correct input from the sensory system to be able to use that information in life. When it is not functioning correctly, it sends messages to the brain that are interrupted as pain.

This is often labeled Sensory Integration Disorder (SID) and the symptoms can also be found in the labels of Autism, ADD and ADHD. These sensory messages shouldn’t be painful. However, if the system is not functioning correctly or is functioning in a hyper sensitive manner, they register as pain to that individual. If on the other hand, the messages are hypo (not enough), then the individual doesn’t have awareness of the signals from the environment and, therefore, doesn’t feel what they should.

In this episode learn why your child might:

-struggle with proper pencil grasp

-be uncomfortable in socks or clothes

-hate mushy food

-get bruises but have no idea where they came from

-jerk away from your gentle touch

-forget to wipe his face after eating

-hate haircuts and brushing hair

-have trouble opening jars or tying shoes

-get in other people’s social space

All of these are symptoms of a tactile system that has immature pathways. This means the messages to the brain are getting corrupted, making the individual feel too much or too little. No one has to live with these often debilitating effects of a sensory system that is misfiring. The NeuroDevelopmental Approach promoted by Little Giant Steps can teach you how to make these sensory pathways mature and functional. You can gain more information about this approach in the other podcasts listed here or visit or for ways to get help for your child.

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Stop Overreacting! It’s Not That Loud!

#20_StopOverreactingItsNotThatLoud_handoutStop Overreacting Its Not That LoudStop Overreacting! It’s Not That Loud!

Episode #20

Stop Overreacting! It’s Not That Loud!

Have you ever been really frustrated with your child’s reaction to sound?  Have you been troubled by his ability to understand what you are saying?  Has it crossed your mind that you might need to get her hearing checked?  If the answer to any of these questions is yes, then this podcast is for you.

There really is a reason why children do the things they do.  They are all looking to meet a need. In the case of the previous questions, it is a need to protect themselves from the overstimulation to the auditory sensory system.  Covering ears, displaying fears and phobias, having trouble sleeping and many other strange behaviors could be reactions to hypersensitivity to sound.  One’s sensory system can tolerate a certain amount of stimulation and then it becomes painful.  Yes, I said painful.

Real pain is experienced when the sensory system is on overload.  In this episode, Jan Bedell, Little Giant Steps’ Brain Coach, will discuss with guest Ruth Young the challenges experienced when the brain hears too much.  They will also discuss tonal processing issues. These issues often manifest themselves in situations like when children think you said one thing, but you really said something different.  Imagine how hard it is to navigate through a world that at times sounds like a foreign language.

Strategies will be discussed to reduce or eliminate the sensory overload and distortions often found in children diagnosed with Autism or Sensory Integration Disorder.  In the coming weeks, Jan will also bring to the podcast solutions for sensory issues like hypersensitivity to touch and visual hypersensitivity.



Visit our sponsor Little Giant Steps for information about

  • Free auditory processing kit – here
  • Help for math facts – here
  • Brain boosting products – here





Neuroplasticity – Rewiring The Brain

neuroplasticity rewiring the brain

Neuroplasticity – Rewiring The Brain with Dr. Jan Bedell

Podcast #19

Neuroplasticity, hmm? Do we really have to use such an unfamiliar word?  Yes, to describe the amazing gift that God has given us we can start with a big word and break it down.  It really is quite simple – “neuro” is having to do with the brain and “plasticity” is the ability to change.  Our brains are changing all the time. This is really good news when you have a struggling learner or a child with a label like dyslexia, ADD, ADHD or autism.  The key is knowing how to fuel the brain with the right kind of stimulation so it builds new pathways.  From these new pathways, the brain can receive, organize, process and store information well enough to bring it out and use it in everyday life.  With the right kind of stimulation, your brain can take little developmental steps to achieve giant strides in academics and overall function.  That is what happens when you use the products and services of Little Giant Steps.

In this episode, you will hear the experience of a teacher that had taught first grade for 17 years before using The NeuroDevelopmental Approach in her classroom in year 18.  It made a huge difference for her students and can make a difference for you and your family as well.  Applying just a little information can make all the difference in your child’s future.  We shouldn’t leave out the adults either!  It is never too late to change the brain.  Two ladies in their 50’s, one a reading tutor and the other a Montessori teacher who had always struggled with reading comprehension, raised their reading comprehension score by 3 ½ years in only four months’ time.   And guess what? They didn’t do any specific reading program.  All it took was organization and specific stimulation to the brain and their abilities radically changed.


Visit our sponsor Little Giant Steps for information about

  • Free auditory processing kit – here
  • Help for math facts – here
  • Brain boosting products – here



Making Math Easier

making math easierMaking Math Easier with Dr. Jan Bedell  Podcast #18

Be sure to download the handout below

As homeschoolers we tend to teach the way we were taught or at the very least we are influenced by how we experienced school ourselves.  In this episode, Jan Bedell, the Little Giant Steps Brain Coach, challenges the standard way of doing a few problems to teach a “math lesson” and then sending the student off to “do it on their own”.  Then we grade the papers the child finished and then what?  Do we do more instruction?  Typically not, we just send the paper back with the child and tell them to correct it.  No wonder so many children HATE math.  The myth: If we help the student or do some of the student’s problems for them, it makes us somehow guilty of cheating.   That myth is debunked in this episode.

Also, what about those magic cards we hold up when “working” on math facts?  In this podcast, the lunacy of that frustrating exercise is uncovered and an effective approach to learning math facts quickly and painlessly is introduced.  Just how much faster would math assignments go if math facts were instantly recalled?  How much time is wasted correcting problems where there was a math fact error?  How much better would the child’s attitude be if math assignments were more quickly done so there was time to spend on other interest areas?  What about dysgraphia? Yes, with the techniques and resources introduced here, those symptoms are reduced or go away. Find how to make math easier in this 25 minute podcast.


Don’t miss the handout attached here with links to pertinent information and discounts.Math


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