How Learning Works

Learning requires much more than just instruction!

If instruction was all that was needed, then students wouldn’t be struggling.

Consider this. To learn math, students must:

  • Sit calmly in a chair
  • Focus their attention on a teacher
  • Maintain attention for the whole lesson
  • Synthesize the words that they hear with the symbols they see written on the board
  • Analyze and understand the conceptual framework
  • Redirect their attention onto their paper
  • Coordinate their bodies to write
  • Apply the concepts they just heard to a new problem before them
  • Solve the problem and do another
  • Remember the entire process
  • Be able to bring that understanding up when they need it in the future

If students miss even one step in that process, they will struggle to learn.

But only one step of that – the teacher’s presentation – is within the teacher’s control!

The rest is all within the student.

Junior high school boy smiles at the camera while walking to class in hallway

And this is why some students are struggling.

They have difficulty focusing their attention to start their work, organize their thoughts and get them down on paper, maintain their attention all the way through an assignment without getting distracted, and remember directions to follow through on assignments. Then they need to remember what was taught and apply it as they work.

They are falling behind in class and cannot achieve their potential in reading, math, spelling, and basic academic skills simply because weak processing skills are holding them back.

And their confidence, self-esteem, and willingness to try when things get hard continue to decline.

So, how can parents help?

We need to strengthen their processing skills and learning skills so they have the cognition needed for successful learning.

“Processing” is an umbrella term that describes a student’s abilities to do all of those fundamental skills listed above: pay attention, focus on the teacher, synthesize information, apply concepts, remember lessons, follow directions, finish work in an appropriate amount of time, and quickly recall learned information to solve a problem, create an idea, or answer a question.

A student with strong processing skills can learn quickly and efficiently. A student with weak processing skills will struggle to learn – no matter how often material is presented. This is why tutoring or additional instruction may not help.

So how do we create strong processing skills?

Where do we start?

We examine your child’s processing skills, learning skills, and academic skills to discover which are getting in the way of your child’s success and happiness.

Weaknesses in these skills also impact your child’s confidence, frustration levels, and willingness to try.

How will Hardy Learning Programs help when the teachers haven’t been able to?

Some of the programs we will be using focus on processing, cognitive, learning, and academic skills individually.

Some of our programs combine academic instruction for reading, spelling, writing, or math with processing, cognitive, and learning skills training so we can improve more than one area at a time.

Why don’t we just tutor and provide academic help?

Tutoring is simply repeating the instruction that your child already received in class. Our goal is for your child to be able to learn the information when it is taught the first time by the teacher without tutoring, or nightly homework struggles.

If your child is struggling to learn new information for more than a few months, it is time to discover the underlying causes. Learning at grade level should not be a struggle.

How Can Hardy Learning Programs Be Successful When Tutoring, Counseling, and Other Special Programs Haven’t Helped?

1. Hardy Programs strengthen the brain’s natural link between movement and learning

Many times students who struggle with learning also have difficulty with attention, (particularly when ‘bored’), organization, remembering information, missing important directions, getting started on work, staying focused long enough to finish it, and remembering to turn it in.

Often the first step for quickly improving difficulties with learning, attention, and organization is to improve processing speed.

Processing speed is impacted by an area of the brain called the cerebellum. This is the fist-sized lobe at the top of the brain stem.

Even though it is small in size compared to the rest of the brain, the cerebellum contains almost half of the brain’s neurons. The cerebellum is responsible for coordinating body movement and it feeds information through dense nerve fibers to the parts of the brain involved in memory and attention. In other words: the part of the brain that moves the body is instrumental for learning. And, the faster information moves from the cerebellum to the cortex and back down again, the faster and easier learning becomes.

2. Hardy Programs Successfully Tap Into the Brain’s Built-in Timing

The brain organizes thinking using in-born timing systems. Hardy programs sync learning skills with the brain’s built-in timing systems to quickly improve processing, learning, and academic skills.

3. Hardy Programs are Organized Using the Brain’s Natural Patterning Strengths

The dense nerve fibers that take information from the cerebellum up to the cortex for processing are arranged in patterns to handle information most effectively. After reaching the cortex, information is stored with similarly patterned Information. Hardy programs teach in patterns so information can be sent and stored more easily by the brain. Rather than present information randomly, Hardy programs are carefully designed to teach in specific patterns that make learning and recall easier.

Why Hardy Programs Are Successful

Hardy Programs teach processing skills and learning skills that develop the cognition needed for successful learning while teaching the most critical reading, spelling, writing, and math skills using movement, timing, and patterning so learning becomes faster and remembering becomes easier.

As students get better at processing information, learning becomes easier. And, as students learn math, reading, writing, and spelling using movement, timing, and patterning they also increase their overall ability to process information more effectively so attention, focus, thinking, and learning skills also improve.

Students who participate in our programs see growth in other academic areas too – because they have improved their brain’s ability to process information.

Improving processing can enhance the academic performance of students at every level – not just those who are struggling. Average and academically gifted students who improve their processing can also see improvements in their learning!

And, the best part is that kids who learn easily are more confident and able to take on new challenges with enthusiasm rather than avoidance and fear.