After I watched your Illuminted Journey vlog, this opportunity presented itself to me. Because the New Moon stage encourages us to step out, and what you mentioned that in your comments to me, I sent this in. Let's see what the Universe is cooking up!! I will look forward to co-creator's feedback on this one!
I recently saw Dr. Bolte Taylor on Oprah's "Soul Series" and listened to her on "Fresh Air" with Terry Gross. I am an elementary school teacher, specifically a Student Support Leader currently assigned to a gifted magnet school called Iles Elementary. (Elijah Iles was one of the founders of Springfield, IL and a friend of Abraham Lincoln. ...just fyi) We have over 21 different ethnicities represented in our student population, meaning 21 different primary languages spoken in homes along with English. We are an inner city, urban school, yet we remain one of the top 7 elementary schools in Illinois. This summer, our staff is receiving training so Iles can become an International Baccalaureate School.
My job is to teach social and emotional standards and benchmarks to every student, as well as provide support for students in crisis or experiencing some kind of distress which impairs their school success. For several years now I have been independently investigating brain wave states and their role in behavior disturbances, specifically anxiety and anger, and their role in de-escalation of disturbances.
After reading Dr. Bolte Taylor's book, "My Stroke of Insight", I became very excited as I read page 155 as she described mental/emotional circuitry loops. I am interested in teaching children to use their minds to create positive lives and short circuit those loops as much as possible. For many years, I was asking, "Are children developmentally able to process this in order to promote healing and health?" Now, I am asking, "How much more receptive are children to healing BEFORE they sublimate their feelings?". In fact, in my limited experience, I have found that children are indeed more receptive and learn in half the time it might take adults to assimilate the same training. (entrainment)
So far, I have encountered one excellent curriculum called, "Whispering Shadows" which teaches children about self talk using cartoon characters as dark, clear and star thinking with challenge sheets. This program also goes in depth about the brain, and the "thought/emotion/behavior" braids as examples so students more easily understand. This has been moderately successful, but I am interested in learning more about adapting a program similar to the one Dr. Bolte Taylor describes in her book to help "short circuit" those loops.
I also recently read Daniel Pink's "A Whole New Mind". He asserts that the right hemisphere of the brain is becoming more important in our affluent , technological and automated world. The synchronicity of reading these two books simultaneously is interesting and seems to be a call to action.
On my personal journey of being diagnosed with a chronic auto-immune disorder, and on my professional journey helping children in crisis, I have drawn some personal conclusions about the etiology of illness/ dis-ease and the correlation to extended periods of certain brain wave states/ negative self talk. I love the concept of "response-ability" in Dr. Bolte Taylor's book.
So, what am I asking? I'm not sure yet, but I wondered your research team might be interested in helping children. I have been accepted into a LEAD Cohort program this fall with the University of Illinois, and will be acquiring a second M.A. in Educational Administration. (my first M.A. was in counseling) In any case, I know I am on this planet to heal my own life, and in turn help children heal and create positive lives no matter what their circumstances. I am interested in using brain research to create " discipline" alternatives in schools.
Please thank Dr. Bolte Taylor for her courage and fortitude in delivering this message of hope and clarity. And thank you and the staff for all you do.