On Saturday, I attended the Heguru seminar for parents with children enrolled in their course. It was the first time in a long time since I have been out without the boys and it felt strange. It’s hard to find time to go out without at least one of the boys in tow, so I usually don’t have time for these seminars. But since Mr and Mrs Henmi were going to be in Malaysia, I felt I couldn’t miss this one.
I’m really glad I attended the seminar because Mr and Mrs Henmi provided more clarity on certain issues I was still unsure about. I only wish I could have stayed longer to talk to them further because I had more questions to ask. Nevertheless, it was a privilege to be able to talk to Mrs Henmi personally because she has had so much experience in right brain education and seen the amazing results of developing the right brain.
What was the seminar about? Here is a brief overview of the topics that were discussed:
- Why parents should send their children for Right Brain Education
- Why parents need to understand Right Brain Education
- What Children Want
- Stories of success of Japanese students who have been through Right Brain Education
- Success Rate in Right Brain Education
The following is an extrapolation from the notes I took down while I was at the seminar. Because the seminar was conducted in Japanese and translated, this is what I took away from it based on what I heard and what I understand so far about right brain education.
Why Right Brain Education?
Why do parents send their children for right brain education? What do they hope to achieve from it? Why should they send their children for right brain education? What can they expect to achieve from it?
Right brain education helps children build connections in the brain. The concept is that the better the connection, the better the brain function. It is like travelling on a highway as opposed to an old trunk road. Information moves more quickly and there is greater efficiency.
Right brain education is about developing the whole person. It not only improves IQ but it also develops EQ. Right brain education can help children perform better in all aspects of life – academics, sports, music, etc. Right brain education develops creativity, communication and character.
In football, it is not only important to develop your skills in the game (which is basically what being good at academics, sports and music is to life), but communication is also important. Communication between the team players is essential for the team’s success. The ability to communicate well is an important life skill (as was also highlighted in Mind in the Making). When we say something, it is important to say it so that the other party understands what we really mean, rather than what they think we mean. Likewise, when we listen to someone, we need to be sure that we understand what they are really trying to say, not what we think they are saying. I hope that makes sense…
Right brain education also helps to develop character – only when the heart is open can the right brain be opened. For example, Mrs Henmi talked of a boy who had developed his right brain but when he saw that he was performing better than his peers, he began to become arrogant. When he started to look down on his peers, his performance declined. His negative emotions closed off his right brain which affected his performance.
Some time back, I wrote that the purpose of this blog was to learn how to raise a child so that he could become a happy, confident and successful person. That is exactly what right brain education does for a child.
The right brain abilities that we have heard about – speed reading, rapid mental calculations, photographic memory – all these are merely tools that assist a child to learn easily and efficiently at school, which in turn creates confidence. When learning at school is easy, it is fun and enjoyable. Instead of struggling over homework and needing to attend extra tuition classes, your child is free for other pursuits of their desire, other extra-curricular activities. They get to enjoy school and life – they become well-balanced, all-rounded individuals, and because right brain education is focused on developing the heart, they grow up to become socially and morally responsible adults. These are not only the foundations for success but happiness as well.
My take out from this is that if we can help to bring out the right brain in our children, it will address all my concerns as a parent. So if I had to choose one program for my child and nothing else, it would be a right brain development program, because everything else stems from this. Get this one right and the rest will fall into place.
Why Parents Need to Understand Right Brain Education
Right brain education is more than simply sending your child to attend classes and practicing right brain activities at home. In order to develop and open up your child’s right brain, you need to examine your child’s heart. If you do not communicate to your child’s heart, it doesn’t matter how hard you work to develop your child’s right brain – the program will fail. This is why parents must understand the basic fundamentals of right brain education.
Earlier we mentioned the importance of communication for success in life. Communication between parent and child is important for the success of right brain education. Communication between parent and child when your baby is in the womb. Communication is not only between mother and baby – every family member plays an important role. Parents must make sure they communicate well to their children so that their children’s hearts are open to learn. If your child’s heart is not open, then sending your child for right brain classes is a waste of time.
Right brain education is a philosophy. It is also a style of parenting. It is important to provide your child love, kindness and understanding. Do not reprimand your child for failures. However, that doesn’t mean you cannot reprimand your child for misbehaving. You should discipline your child, but make sure you are not scolding them for the wrong reasons. Similar to many parenting books, right brain philosophy is that you reprimand your child for the inappropriate behaviour and you make sure your child knows that it is his behaviour that you are not happy with. Some children who are told off for being “bad” will assume, “Mum says I’m bad, therefore I must be bad.” When there is no context to which part is bad the child assumes everything about him is bad.
What Children Want
- To be acknowledged
- Free to do whatever they want
- To be useful to others
Parents, on the other hand, want to control their children. This isn’t necessarily the right way. We should direct and guide them, not control them.
Right Brain Education – Success Stories
Although it is important not to be results-oriented in right brain education, I think it is beneficial for parents to know about the successes from right brain education. The difference here is that you should not be pushing your child to achieve specific milestones with a set timetable in mind. However, knowing about the success of children who have been through right brain education helps to reinforce confidence in parents.
It is important for parents to believe in the program because children feed off their parents emotions. In order to achieve success with right brain education, parents’ emotions must resonate with the teachers’.
Mr Henmi highlighted the success of three students who had been through right brain education since young. The first was a girl who had won an English Speaking Competition in Japan. She had no overseas experience and had lived all her life in Japan, yet when she spoke, she spoke fluently as if she was a native English speaker.
The second was a student who successfully gained entry to a public university in Japan to study medicine. To give an example of how difficult it was to enter a public university, Mr Henmi explained that it cost 4 million yen to study medicine in a public university versus 30 million yen in a private university. Not only was this student successful in entering the university, but he was a high achiever with broad exposure in extracurricular activities. He was a theatre director and he played the guitar as part of a jazz group.
The third was a student who gained direct entry into Tokyo University to study Science III. Tokyo University is one of the most difficult universities to enter. Science III was a course that accepted only 90 students every year. Yet this student had no other special preparation or tuition classes except his right brain education. In fact, all three students had no other special preparatory classes except right brain classes.
Success Rates in Right Brain Education
By now you’re probably thinking sure it’s great what these students have achieved, but what is the success rate after having gone through right brain education? Are these students just outliers? According to Mrs Henmi, the success rate from the school in Japan is 95%. 95% of all students going through their school successfully develop their right brain. 95% of the students are able to wave read (quantum speed read) by the time they are in primary school.
Part 2 – 10 Rules for Developing the Right Brain.