The MIND Program

Examining the MIND

Currently, the evaluation and diagnosis of ADD/ADHD and various neurobehavioral disorders are obtained through subjective questionnaires that are completed by both parent(s) and teacher, and then reviewed by the pediatrician. All recommendations, diagnosis, and intervention are based on the parents and teacher’s perception of the child and their behavior. Unlike the current mode(s) of evaluation, the MIND assessment is a comprehensive two part evaluation based on objective data.

Neurological Examination: First, our physician will obtain a complete developmental history of your child. This is followed by a comprehensive neurological examination to assess functional aberrancies in cognition, motor-sensory processing, extraocular movement, sensory integration, coordination and balance, visual-spatial organization, gross/fine motor skills, as well as working memory (short and long term). In addition, laboratory testing to assess the integrity of the gut-brain axis, immune responses, and food reactivity/cross-reactivity may be ordered if deemed necessary.

Educational Evaluation: The Educational Assessment: Prior to any testing, you will meet with one of our certified psychological examiners and/or educational diagnosticians (affiliated with Special School District), to review your child’s educational history. Afterwards, your child will participate in a standardized educational assessment to establish a baseline level (age and grade) of academic understanding and processing ability. Domains tested include, but are not limited to: reading (comprehension and fluency), spelling, oral and written language, mathematics (calculations, fluency, application), as well as academic knowledge and fluency. Further testing may be recommended based on your child’s performance.


Meeting of the MINDs
Once all the testing has been completed, experts from the medical and educational teams collaborate to review the data obtained. This conference allows our specialist a comprehensive multi-perspective, and objective understanding of your child’s developmental and educational challenges.

Based on the results of this meeting:

Our medical team will design an individualized brain-based program to retrain, reinforce, and in even re-establish new connections, directed at the areas of decreased activity or communication observed during the exam.  These connections improve physical, behavioral, attention as well as processing ability and efficiency.

Our educational team will create a progressive in-house curriculum of specialized cognitive exercises to address your child’s academic struggles. It is this unique and collaborative approach that affords your child the best long term prognosis to achieve success both academically and socially.

Once your child’s individualized brain-based educational program has been designed, a professional from both medical and educational teams will meet with you to review the results, as well as any treatment recommendations.

 


The MIND Team
Our team is comprised of professionals from the healthcare and educational fields.

Medical Team

  • Functional Neurology
  • Neurological Rehabilitation
  • Physical therapy
  • Occupational therapy
  • Speech & Language
Educational Team

  • Master Degreed Educator(s)
  • Special Educators holding certifications in LD/BD
  • Reading Specialists
  • Certified Psychological/Academic Diagnosticians

 


The Program

Sensory-Motor Training
The ability of a child to respond appropriately to their environment is dependent upon their capacity to properly process sensory information. Incoming visual, auditory, spatial, touch, smell, and taste information is transformed into electrical impulses by our nervous system. These impulses activate various neuronal networks within the brain that influence behavior, emotion, cognition, motor (gross and fine) execution, endocrine function and autonomic responses. Recent evidence-based literature supports (link to library) that children with ADD/ADHD, dyslexia and learning disabilities all demonstrate deficits in motor planning.

Neuro-Academic Achievement
The process by which a child learns can be as unique as a snowflake. Unfortunately our learning institutions are designed to teach to the masses with the hopes that the majority understand the concepts presented. The educational staff at MIND not only holds specialized and advance degrees in educating children with learning difficulties, but they are also trained in brain-based educational techniques to address your child’s specific learning struggles. Brain-based education emphasizes how the brain learns naturally and is based on what we currently know about the actual structure and function of the human brain at varying developmental stages. Using the latest neural research, educational techniques that are brain friendly provide a biologically driven framework for creating effective instruction. This form of learning also encompasses such newer educational concepts like:

  • Multiple Intelligences
  • Mastery Learning
  • Experiential Learning
  • Cooperative Learning
  • Practical Simulations
  • Problem-Based Learning
  • Proactive Thinking Strategies
  • Critical Thinking Skills

Social-Emotional Processing Therapy
While it was once thought that a child’s success was directly proportional to their IQ, it was recently determined that their EQ (Emotional Quotient) was equally, if not more important, to their lifelong success. Children diagnosed with Social-Emotional Processing Disorder (SEPD), Asperger’s Syndrome, Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) often suffer poor interpersonal adaptation and deficiencies in non-verbal cognitive ability and paralinguistic communication skills. The social-emotional processing program at MIND addresses facial expression and body language recognition, interpreting spoken and unspoken interaction, interactive therapies that require cooperative goal achievement, modeling, and social situation problem solving. Social skills training is based on the assumption that when people improve their social skills or change selected behaviors, they will raise their self-esteem and increase the likelihood that others will respond favorably to them.

Visual-Spatial Organization
The Visual-spatial therapy program at MIND addresses both perceptual and memory components of learning. Visual-spatial perception is the ability to form mental images (big picture and fine details) of observed objects, as well as making connections between those objects and learned material. While visual-spatial memory deals with the storage and retrieval of previously observed or learned material. This includes the ability to visualize information based on verbal description, as well as communicate previously perceived information/objects through drawing.