“Ehara taku toa i te toa takitahi, engari he toa takimano.’
‘My strength is not that of an individual, but that of the collective.’
LearnED aims to keep learning alive through collaborative discussion, evidence-based information, research and inquiry. LearnED education workshops are suitable for educators and support workers in the early childhood and primary phases. A professional development workshop with LearnED will help gain further knowledge on:
Gain techniques and strategies on how to support children with learning, behavioural, sensory, physical, emotional and social challenges.
I am a Tomatis Practitioner Level 1. The Tomatis listening program helps with brain stimulation and cortical arousal, fine and gross motor skills, attention and working memory, emotions and stress regulation, speech, reading and writing. This Listening program can be delivered to individuals or groups of students.
LearnED workshops will empower you:
You can also discuss with us developing a tailored workshop to best suit your needs.
My name is Julianne Swanepoel. I am a fully registered and practicing teacher in primary education in Taranaki. I am also a Tomatis (Auditory Integration) Practitioner working with both individuals and groups of students in schools. I would appreciate your taking a few moments to read my resume and browse the various workshops I have listed. This is by no means a finite list. You may decide there is some other related area of interest that would better serve your purpose, in which case I will do my best to accommodate you!
My career in education began in South Africa working for the Education Department of Kwa Zulu Natal, predominantly in Early Childhood but also in Primary schools where I practiced both as a teacher and a school principal. After a further ten years learning, living and working in Early Childhood Education in Botswana, I came to New Zealand in 2006.
After achieving an HDE in Pre and Prim Ed., I soon developed a curiosity in neuro-development and the different ways children learn. I completed a course in Mind Dynamix🇷 while in Botswana, and the HANDLE🇷 (Holistic Approach to Neuro Development & Learning Efficiency)Screener course in Australia. The knowledge gained from these courses, led to me doing a Postgrad Degree in Special Ed with an endorsement in ASD (Massey Uni). I have recently completed Levels 1 and 2 of RMTi (Rhythmic Movement Training) which focuses on the early, primitive reflexes of infants. The purpose of the specific movements is to bring integration and balance to children and adults with learning, behavioural, sensory, physical, emotional and social challenges.
I am a Tomatis Level 1 Practitioner offering the Tomatis method of Auditory Integration Training to individuals as well as groups of students in schools. Go to www.tomatis.nz to learn more more!
Bevan-Brown, J & Dharan V. (Editors) (2016) – Autism Spectrum Disorder in Aotearoa New Zealand: Promising practices and interesting issues. Chapter 13 Sensory therapies & interventions for individuals with ASD.
I have also obtained an ACTDEC Degree in TESOL (UK) and participated in Levels 1-4 of Te Reo Maori through Te Wānanga o Aotearoa.
My teaching career in New Zealand has been as a classroom teacher in various schools, and a support teacher in mainstream education and in a Special Needs unit.
As an educator I believe enthusiasm, dedication and having an enquiring mind essential qualities to keep the spark of learning alive both in myself as well as in those I teach, coach and mentor; hence my motivation for starting LearnED.
Please contact me to arrange a date and time. I look forward to hearing from you!
1 – What is Learning?
“HOW we learn, is WHAT we learn” – Bonnie Friedman
Neurophysiologist and educator, Dr Carla Hannaford expanded on the concept of learning and building memories to develop a knowledge base, by explaining that learning and growing is a multifaceted process where learning, thought, creativity, and intelligence are not processes of the brain alone, but of the whole body. Sensations, movement, emotions, and the brain’s integrative functions are grounded in the body and can never exist separately from it. Learning is not just in your head: it is the sensations, received through the ears, eyes, nose, tongue, skin and proprioceptors (receptors within the body which supply information about it’s condition) that are the foundation of knowledge.
Hannaford, C – ‘Smart Moves – Why Learning is not all in your head’, 2017
2 – Removing Barriers to Learning
“Most children grow but not all children develop” – Melodie de Jager
“ . . . it is now clear to me that anticipation of pleasure is the key to all learning. Only the neuropeptides and other information molecules that promote pleasure in our lives can stimulate and enhance the learning process. All other molecules of emotion diminish learning in deference to survival. Play is the important work of childhood and the base from which all learning grows. Environments that include pleasure, movement and creativity are truly the most successful for learning.”
Candace B. Pert, Ph.D. Intro to Smart Moves – Why Learning is not all in your head C Hannaford, Ph.D.
3 – Understanding Behaviour
‘Behaviour is the mirror in which everyone shows their image’ – JW von Goethe
‘Human behaviours are expressions of the functional organisation of the various parts of our body and especially of our nervous systems and brains.’ They interact with one another, dynamically. Sometimes weak systems cause others to become stronger, for example, as a person who is deaf-blind relies on touch and smell.
4 – Looking for Signs
Playing with hair, chewing on pencils, fidgeting with anything they can find, can’t sit still, constantly pulls at their clothing, slumps over their work when reading or writing, keep having to repeat instructions . . . what are these behaviours telling you? Behaviours are signs that tell us something is affecting daily function; something is preventing or obstructing the ability to perform tasks in a more efficient way.
In a group discussion setting, and with more information about ‘reading the signs’ find ways to meet the needs of these learners.
5 – All about Autism
Seen by many as a ‘diffability’ rather than a disability, autism is a ‘developmental disorder of brain function typically manifested in three classic symptoms: impaired social interaction, difficulty with verbal and non-verbal communication and severely limited activities and interests’(Bluestone, J. p1 The Fabric of Autism 2004)
It is seen as a complex disorder and therefore, establishing a rigid set of rules for teaching these children is a huge challenge.
While there are many theories and approaches that claim to work, there will always be the child with autism that will not fit the rule book!
6 – Moving to Learn
Primitive reflexes also known as infant, primary, survival, or neonatal, are initiated in-utero and integrated within the first year of life. They develop our vision and fine motor skills necessary for reading and writing, our sensory integration and postural support and are identified by a movement response to a sensory stimulus. Each reflex plays a role in organization and maturation of the nervous system and impacts movement, attention, emotions, posture and all other aspects of learning.
Retained primitive reflexes negatively impact our learning efficiency and ability to achieve our true learning potential and daily function performance.
( RMTi https://rhythmicmovement.org/ )
7 – Cognitive functions & their importance
The Vestibular system is either directly or indirectly responsible for nearly all of our motor functions and some of our sensory functions too, therefore, the number of functions that may be irregular if the vestibular system is compromised, is quite diverse. From the more obvious such as repeated ear infections and motion sickness to the more obscure such as the need to move fast, a discomfort when hearing plosive sounds or the inability to read or write in cursive script.
Proprioception, Muscle Tone, Audition, Kinaesthesia are just some of these functions.
8 – Left, Right & Whole Brain Learning!
Interhemispheric Integration is communication between the two cerebral hemispheres. To function efficiently, we need to be able to integrate information and coordinate a planned response. The following are just a few issues that can occur in a person experiencing difficulty with whole brain function:
9 – Disorganised Attachment & Survival
If the survival part of the brain is activated, a child cannot learn properly. When in survival mode, a learner cannot express what is going wrong for them, just that they feel anxious instead of calm and connected. They may be disinterested, confused, forgetful, daydream, clumsy or have difficulty moving through tasks, and will ‘shut down’ if they perceive themselves to be ‘under attack’. What causes this and how can we help?
10 – Supporting Special Needs Learners to become self-regulated learners
All learners have needs. Some more than others. By being aware of the following pointers, you will be helping all those learners in your classroom . . .
Look for and treat root causes, be non-judgemental, observe.
Know that nothing stands alone and that people show us subconsciously what they need. Remember that Movement helps develop and organise brain function!