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Thinking Skills
Since the late 80s The Edinburgh Centre for Accelerated Learning has been at the forefront in the UK of the Revolution in Wholebrain Learning, developing techniques which allow even 7 year old dyslexics to spell words like psychiatrist and encyclopedia forwards and backwards or learn the time in days instead of months or years.

20 years later the Centre is breaking new ground with its Thinking Skills Programme aimed at raising IQ and developing Pro-Active Thinking.

The Programme mixes Learning How to do IQ Tests , Memory and Concentration Enhancing Games for all the family and Health Tips for young and old, working on the premise that a healthy body lends itself considerably to a healthy mind. The programme is aimed at 2 groups, 7 to 11 year olds and the over 50s who want to get their brain back in fighting trim.
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This consists of 4 levels of Roman Numerals, accompanied by Notes for Teachers, Parents and Students as well as the answers to all 4 levels, 80 questions in all. No time limit.

Click here for a sample of the Parent, Teacher, Student Notes.

Try these 20 Level 1 Questions

Click here for the Media Pack.

The main part of the programme revolves around a 20 question IQ Test. Time limit: 30 minutes. No child is expected to finish the test (and only a few adults will) and despite its size, it will be a good indicator of the child's IQ which will be shown via a simple automatic process. Though the more important figure wi be the result of the 2nd IQ Test.

What makes this IQ test different from others is that students are not only shown the answers after the test but are shown how to get the answers with tips on strategies for particular questions. The student then embarks on a 100 question exercise based on the 20 questions he has just taken, (5 IQ Improvement Questions per each of the original). There is no time limit to this exercise.

What we are actually interested in here is not a measurement of current IQ but an improvement in the understanding of how the answers are arrived at, especially to questions which have previously been a problem for the person taking the test.

In order to overcome difficulties we have to first understand what it is we are being asked to do. Our brain is not one entity nor is our mind. Our brain has 3 distinct layers, Reptilian, Mammalian and the Neo Cortex, the Neo Cortex being divided into two Hemispheres, left and right and joined by a thick band of fibres called the Corpus Callosum.

But our mind is not one huge basketball either; it is also made up of different sized balls with different functions. Howard Gardner, the Harvard psychologists, has identified 8 different types of Intelligences, 2 in the left hemisphere and 6 in the right hemisphere with strong connections to the mid brain (Mammalian), our Control Centre.

IQ grows as new dendrites are created and with the new dendrites comes increased understanding. (Each neural cell can grow up to 100,000 dendrites - connective tissues to other neural cells. This effectively increases our IQ, though not over all our 8 Intelligences only the ones involved in that particular exercise of information intake or problem solving.)

When the students have completed this task, taking as long as they like to understand how these questions are answered, they can then get part 2 of the programme which begins with a second 20 question IQ test in the same format as the first. On this occasion they will be able to answer more questions and see a rise in their IQ score.

This second IQ test is based on Non Verbal reasoning, following the same pattern as the first. This part will also include memory games like Kim's game and the less well known 7s, as well as a host of others designed to sharpen the memory and improve concentration. These are games all the family can play. Students will also be introduced to Lateral Thinking and Divergent Thinking skills, to be developed in

To understand the nature of intelligence more fully my article on Intelligence is included in your Thinking Skills package.

One for children, one for the over 50s and one for everyone. Many more tips and information to come on anti oxidants, vitamins, free radicals, exercise, anti ageing, brain food,most with direct links to reliable sources.

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