The children who tested right-brained on the screening instrument (?) seemed
very sensitive to color. They could tell how color tasted, how it made them
feel, and which colors they associated with which people. Understanding
this, I could better relate to the fact that these children reacted to the
different colors worn, to a colored classroom, or the the color their
bedroom was painted, or related better to toys of a specific color.
When the children were helped to understand their own relationship to colors
and how specific colors were affecting them emotionally, they began to have
some control over their own behavior. An assortment of colors were made
available so that the children could select the color that made them feel
calmer, made them feel good, kept their attention longer, or helped them to
work better. They covered their work area with this color, placing their
ditto or homework on top of it so that they were surrounded with feelings of
that specific color. Since children are very changeable creatures, it did
not work to use the same color everyday. Children needed to be able to
select the color that met their needs on any one day.
Often the children demonstrated positive changes in behavior and
concentration. One child in particular never seemed to stop moving. He
seems everywhere at once, always at the wrong time. His favorite color was
red. When asked why the color red made him sit still and think better, he
said, "It makes me feel warm and heavy. The others make me want to fly."
At home, allowing children to select a color that they are most comfortable
with is most important (for his/her bedroom, play area, or clothes) - this
often removes stress and allows him/her to feel more centered.
Children love rainbows. They love colors and the fantasy of a rainbow. Use
this association to give them the same feeling about letters.
Read a story about rainbows, look at pictures of rainbows, and, if possible,
see a real rainbow.
Give each child a model of the letter of letters he is having difficulty
with. Have him use crayons to trace around the letter with each color to
make a rainbow of letters. (the sample shows an arc with letters or words
in it. Red arc at top, then orange, then yellow, then green, then blue,
Add the following variations:
1. Make a rainbow wall. By making each child's name in a different color,
you can make a large rainbow on the wall.
2. Paste the rainbow letters in the sky of a picture.
3. String the rainbow letters across the ceiling.
4. Make a rainbow scrapbook. Put a rainbow letter on each page and paste
pictures from magazines around it in the shape of a rainbow.
5. Color each letter a single color so that you have a "B" for each color
in the rainbow. When all the letters are done, arrange them in a rainbow.
6. Make a cursive rainbow.
7. Make rainbow writing paper. Have the children color each space a color
of the rainbow.
Children who tested right-hemispheric had a natural tendency to function
directionally from their dominant hemisphere toward their non-dominant
hemisphere, or from right to left. This would be no problem if they were
learning Chinese, but since our language has a left-to-right orientation it
seemed a definite problem. These children transposed words in sentences,
mirror wrote, reversed letters like "b" and "d' and reversed the order of
letters within words.
Vertical writing organizes the letters of a word so that the
right-hemispheric child can deal with them comfortably.
Write the vocabulary words on the chalkboard, sequencing from top to bottom
(see example below). Have the children say each letter of the word and name
the word. When you have repeated this several times, have the students
write the words vertically and horizontally on their papers.
Whenever we involve more than one stimulus that right-brained children seem
to respond to, we make learning easier for them. By using color and tactile
input in the same activity, we double the odds of the child's learning.
Teachers have found that having first-grade children finger paint their
reading words is one of the most effective ways for them to learn. This
method may be used with any concept you are trying to teach.
The following variations take courage, but may be more fun:
1. Paint in chocolate (or vanilla or butterscotch) pudding.
2. Paint in cake frosting of various colors and flavors.
3. Paint in shaving cream or toothpaste ( striped are colorful).
Whipped cream, yogurt, mayonnaise, mustard, apple butter, ketchup - all of
these lend themselves to a somewhat messy but very valuable learning
If you absolutely cannot live with the mess involved in creative finger
painting, don't do it. Simply paint with water.
Give a child a paint brush and a small container of water. Small plastic
cheese containers are excellent for this purpose (as are plastic frosting
jars with their flat bottoms.) Baby food jars work will but they are
breakable. Some children will need 2- or 3-inch crushes while others will
do very will with half-inch bristle brushes.
Have the children practice whatever you are teaching by writing it on the
chalkboard with the brush dipped in water. (This works well outside on the
side of the building or the sidewalk in hot weather.)
Water activities stimulate visualization, memory, and gross motor skills.
I will do more later. Linda in NM
>Larry Cox wrote:
>> I found some information on right brain/left brain activities in a folder
>> that I have had for 15 years. Would you be interested in any of this
>> material. The titles are:
>> Home and school organization
>> The clock body
>> Teaching the hour
>> Teaching the half hours
>> Tooth brushing
>> Vertical Writing
>> Color grounding
>> Color writing
>> Rainbow letters
>> Teaching directionality
>> Water painting
>> Finger painting
>> Tactile writing
>> Air writing
>> Whole letter writing
>> Flashlight tracking
>> Intuitive Reading
>> Linda in NM
>Hi Larry! (or is it Linda in NM?)
>Thank you very much for your response! I really appreciate it. Wow, it`s
>a list you`ve got there! I find several issues very interesting, but I`m
>afraid that you have to write it down yourself (I assume its not on a disc)
>I can pick out just a few. If its not too much work for you, I really would
>like to read about the following: Music, Teaching directionality, Tactile
>writing and Intuitive reading. If it`s too much, you just pick out one or
>Anything is good. Thanx again!
>Best regards, Gine from Norway