Brain Hierarchy: When Your Child?s Lower Brain Levels Are Weak, they Can?t Learn

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This article contains information regarding the brain hierarchy and how each part affects learning in the classroom. Affiliate links are included for your convenience.

Did you know that the brain of an infant contains essentially all the brain cells that they will ever need for learning throughout their lifespan? Add this to the knowledge that a newborn baby?s brain is about a third the size of an adult brain, but has all the mechanics it needs to develop speech, language, balance, coordination, executive functioning and sensory input. The growth and development of the brain and its functions are fascinating. When a baby is born, the arm and leg movements resemble more of a jellyfish motion than a mature human being. But the truth is, the brain develops at an astounding speed, especially because it?s needed for higher learning functions in school. The brain development during the first six months of life is focused on motor skills and sensory processing for improving our five senses (hearing, taste, sight, smell and touch). All of this work is setting up the brain for higher learning.

The Brain Develops in Layers

Why is it important to know how your child?s brain works and which parts are responsible for learning? Although the brain is complicated, the more you understand about how your child or student?s brain functions, then you can target those specific areas with activities and exercises to improve their learning development in the classroom. For instance, if we want your child to improve their receptive and expressive language, we want them to do front to back brain-building exercises, like you see here, as a way for them to listen to the teacher and then express what they learned on paper when they take a test.

The brain doesn?t automatically know how to tell the body to sit down, pick up a book and to begin reading in one day. This process is learned in layers, building upon each other, day after day with sensory experiences, motor planning, and cognitive development. The brain is a very complex structure with neurons, blood vessels and synapses constantly growing, developing or shutting down, as is the case with synaptic pathways. The area of the brain that is responsible to keep the heart beating is not the same place where active learning and memory skills take place. There is a hierarchy to the brain, which is comprised of four working levels that all cooperate to control the basic life needs of time management.