Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Questions to Stimulate Higher Order Thinking Skills

The following questions come from the following website - http://www1.appstate.edu/~goodmanj/4401/peerteach/questions.htm
Examples of Questions
Knowledge: Exhibit memory of previously learned material by recalling facts, terms, basic concepts and answers.
· “What is...?"
· “How would you describe...?"
· “Why did...?
· "How would you show...?"
Comprehension: Demonstrate understanding of facts and ideas by organizing, translating, interpreting, giving descriptions, and stating main ideas.
· “What facts or ideas show...?"
· "How would you compare...?"
· "How would you classify...?
· "Can you explain what is happening...?"
Application: Solve problems to new situations by applying acquired knowledge, facts, techniques and rules in a different way.
·"What would result if...?"
· "What facts would you select to show...?"
"What approach would you use to...?"
· "How would you use...?"
Analysis: Examine and break information into parts by identifying motives or causes. Make inferences and find evidence to support generalizations.
· "What inference can you make...?"
· "What is the relationship between...?"
· "What evidence can you find...?"
· "What things justify...?"
Synthesis: Compile information together in a different way by combining elements in a new pattern or proposing alternative solutions.
· "What could be changed to improve...?"
· "How would you test...?"
· "What way would you design...?"
· "What outcome would you predict for...?"
Evaluation: Present and defend opinions by making judgments about information, validity of ideas or quality of work based on a set of criteria.
· "How could you select...?"
· "How could you prove...?"
· "How would you prioritize...?"
· "What information would you use to support...?"

Monday, March 26, 2012

Self-Care for Teachers, Parents and Professionals

Dear Friends,
     As the year goes on, we may find ourselves feeling tired, or having less energy.  Knowing some simple things that you can do for self-care can be a great help.  Just taking a moment or two to engage in some strategies that energize and revitalize you can be a great help.  Here are just a few things to try:

-Take time to self-assess.  Take time each day to be still and to notice what it is that you need.  Take time to notice the state of your mind, body, and spirit and note what your body is asking from you.

-Take time to breathe or just take simple breaks throughout the day.  Simple things like sitting up straight, taking a long inhale and exhale, sipping water or walking can offer relaxation.  Taking time to think of something positive or to say something positive to yourself offer moments of inspiration and a positive lift.

-Know your triggers for stress.  Take time to understand and buffer yourself from triggers ("buttons") that can make you feel stressed.  Plan ways to deal with the stress that comes from these triggers and give yourself time.

-Set healthy boundaries for yourself.  Give yourself permission to say "no" when you need to.  This will help you and everyone in the long run too.

Be good to yourself,
Kimberly Borin
Learning Specialist

Monday, March 19, 2012


Dear Friends:
Topic - Neurobiofeedback: AKA – EEG Biofeedback
Neurobiofeedback is a non-invasive method to train the brain to self-regulate itself. This method can be used for ADD/ADHD, sleep issues, anxiety, and headaches. It is about a twenty session process (but will vary individual to individual) to guide the brain to more desirable functioning. Neurobiofeedback is conducted by a trained individual. A licensed provider can be located by using directory.eeginfo.com. Neurobiofeedback is done by having the provider hook up electrodes to certain locations on the head to measure brain wave frequency. A trained provider will individualize where the electrodes are placed based on the individual’s needs. After being connected, the provider will monitor brainwave frequencies and try to build up the good, while lessening the bad brainwaves. The individual is playing a video game or controlling music playing, which will work if the individual is “in the zone.” In the zone means that one is able to do the task for an extended period of time. When one falls out of the zone, the game or music will cease playing. The person then needs to refocus and begin the game or music again. Essentially Neurobiofeedback can work for some individuals to retrain their brain. Below are two YouTube videos which provide further insight into neurofeedback.
Have a wonderful and productive day,
Mrs. Kim Turse

Monday, March 12, 2012

Music for Relaxation

Dear Friends,
     When I am working with students in a classroom or in a yoga class, I infuse different kinds of music into what we are doing.  The students enjoy a variety of music - sometimes in one lesson - and noticing how each type of music makes them feel.  I have noticed that students of all ages (adults included) can't help but laugh and feel playful with dolphin or whale music - and feel happy and peaceful with ocean and rain sounds.  The music seems to transform the mood and the room too!
     Below is a list of some of the music I use.  I hope you'll find music that is transformative and nourishing for you too!
Kimberly Borin
  • "Relax with “Song of the Dolphins” – Enhanced with Music – Nature Music
  • “Song of the Whales” – Nature’s Music – Nature Music
  • “Natural Stress Relief” by Solitudes – Music for Your Health - Nature Music (Ocean and Rain)
  • “Dakshina” by Deva Premal – Sanskrit Chanting
  • “Unwind” by Somerset Entertainment Ltd. – Acoustic Guitar
  • “Zen Grooves” by Somerset Entertainment Ltd. – New Age
  • “Inner Voices” by Carlos Nakai –Native American Flute Music
  • “State of Grace III” by Paul Schwartz – Spiritual Music
  • “Sleep Deeply” by Solitudes and Somerset Entertainment Ltd. – New Age
  • “Shamanic Dream” by Anugama – New Age
  • “Refresh” – Hallmark Licensing, Inc. 
  • “Watermark” by Enya
  • “Shepherd’s Moon” by Enya

Monday, March 5, 2012

Possible Reasons for Your Lack of Concentration

  • Being Overtired – sleep is such an important part of the day. According to the National Sleep Foundation, “Teens need at least 8½ hours—and on average 9¼ hours—a night of uninterrupted sleep to leave their bodies and minds rejuvenated for the next day. If sleep is cut short, the body doesn’t have time to complete all of the phases needed for muscle repair, memory consolidation and release of hormones regulating growth and appetite. Then we wake up less prepared to concentrate, make decisions, or engage fully in school and social activities.” http://www.sleepfoundation.org/article/how-sleep-works/what-happens-when-you-sleep
  • Diet - See the link http://www.webmd.com/food-recipes/features/foods-for-better-concentration. This article discusses the foods that are beneficial for one’s concentration. A poor diet or too much caffeine can lessen concentration levels. In order for your body to perform at its optimal level, one must feed it quality foods. 
  • Stress – The many stressors around us can have an impact on our concentration. Individuals that are experiencing stress have difficulty controlling their attention. Stress is a distracter which steals away your mental energy and ability to concentrate. See the blog posts on relaxation techniques – they can provide you a valuable way to lessen the amount of stress you are feeling and in turn increase your ability to concentrate.