All of our Programs are located at the Mediated Learning Academy. Detailed information about each program can be found on the Education page, and program applications are downloadable from the Forms page.

FIE | Bright Start | LPAD | Summer Camps
Parents as Mediators | Tutoring

Programs

Feuerstein’s Instrumental Enrichment (FIE)

Instrumental Enrichment (IE) is a cognitive education program that was developed in the 1970’s by Professor Reuven Feuerstein. The program has been successfully used in seventy countries as a tool for the enhancement of learning potential in challenged individuals and those in high-risk environments. IE materials are organized into instruments that comprise paper and pencil tasks aimed at such specific cognitive domains such as comparative behaviour, classification, analysis, inferencing, etc. The IE program is mediated by a certified IE instructor and can be implemented in the classroom setting or as individual tutoring. The Instrumental Enrichment program has received world wide recognition and has been translated into sixteen languages.

Mastery of the tasks in Instrumental Enrichment is never a matter of rote learning or mere reproduction of a learned skill. It always involves the application of rules, principles, or strategies in a variety of tasks. Thus, IE systematically reinforces the cognitive functions that enable learners to define problems, make connections and see relationships, motivate themselves, and improve their work habits.

Learning how to learn takes place through repetition – not repetition of the IE tasks themselves, but of the cognitive functions that enable individuals to think effectively. Tasks become increasingly complex and abstract, and the instruments reinforce cognitive functions in a cyclical manner. Deliberately free of specific subject matter, the IE tasks are intended to be more readily transferable to all life situations.

www.icelp.org

Bright Start

Bright Start is a flexible cognitive curriculum for young children, designed for use with children functioning at developmental levels from 3 to 6 years, including those who are ‘normally developing’, those who are sociologically at risk of school failure, and those who have low IQs. The primary goal of Bright Start is one of ‘stretching the mind’, that is, broadening children’s understanding and thinking processes, thereby increasing their educability. It is a structured approach, with strong emphasis on the child’s induction of rules and explanatory concepts. Teachers emphasise the orderliness and predictability of the world, beginning with principles of organisation, rule following, rule making, rule applying, and the systematic processes required for orderly perception, analysis, understanding, learning, and problem solving. Children learn to:

  • Conform their behaviour to internalised standards for rational reasons
  • Perceive the existence of problems
  • Identify processes for finding solutions
  • Apply those processes according to logical functions
  • Abandon unsuccessful strategies to seek new ones
  • Be critical of their own solutions
  • Offer logical support of their thinking, learning and problem-solving processes
  • Bright Start can also be used with small groups of children. A Speech-Language Pathologist, for instance, may want to work with the classroom teacher by providing Bright Start training to a smaller group of students as part of the Bright Start curriculum delivery.

    Dynamic Assessment

    The term ‘Dynamic Assessment’ has become recognized as a generic term applied to a pre-test – intervene – post-test approach to assessment. It differs from normative assessment in that it is specifically constructed to yield information about how a student learns and about what factors are able to produce changes in the student’s learning.

    ‘Dynamic Assessment’ is not intended to produce scores comparing students to each other, but it is designed to produce scores comparing pre and post-test performance (gain scores). In this way the student is compared to him/herself.

    The most important aspect of Dynamic Assessment, however, is what happens in the intervention phase. Intervention is most meaningful and successful when it takes the form of Mediated Learning, a type of interaction that is goal-directed, fosters connections between new learning and what a student already knows, helps apply new learning to academic subjects and to life experience, and creates feelings of competence.

    In Mediated Learning, the learning experience is a shared experience. In this context intervention implies working to success. Normative assessment is always constructed in such a way that the testing is discontinued after a certain number of successive failures, e.g. wrong answers, no responses. In Dynamic Assessment, the criterion for stopping a test is when a student has achieved success. Consequently, the test experience is an extremely positive experience for both the assessor and the test taker. It is because of this that Dynamic Assessment in and of itself often serves as a catalyst for long-term change, even though it has never been intended for this purpose.

    The tools (tests) used in Dynamic Assessment are called instruments. The Learning Propensity Assessment Device (LPAD) and the Dynamic Assessment of Young Children (DAYC) are two sets of such instruments. The are constructed to assess a wide range of functioning (ranging from memory and attention processes and need for precision to higher level thinking processes, such as hypothetical reasoning, as well as to output functions, such as use of precise language), in visual, figural, numerical and language modalities. They are relatively culture-free and require only limited content knowledge. They are, thus, uniquely suited to students from different cultures or students of low socio-economic background. In any case, the assessor is free during the intervention phase to teach concepts, language and background knowledge, as required.

    Most of the instruments can also be used for group assessment, making Dynamic Assessment not only a rich and positive experience, but also a cost effective means of assessment.

    In order to begin the Dynamic Assessment journey, training is required (about 1 week), in the theoretical foundations, the administration and interpretation of the instruments, in mediated learning and in reporting the results.

    The ‘payoffs’ can be manifold, and range from an increase in skills to greater understanding of cognitive functions to renewed joy in the assessment process. It is, in the end, as much a professional as a personal journey.

    Parents as Mediators

    Parents learn how to use the principles of mediated learning to facilitate their childrens' social, emotional and cognitive development using daily life events and the families' cultural heritage. This program is offered from time to time at parents' request.

    www.mindladder.com

    Tutoring

    Please phone to inquire about tutors in your area. Most tutors will work in the home, some tutoring occurs at the Centre. We employ mediation and cognitive program tutoring.

     
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