Karine Estadieu, Inclusive Education Coordinator
Over the past few decades, the world of neuroscience has provided groundbreaking discoveries regarding the brain. One of its main points is the plasticity of our brain – this extraordinary ability of the brain to change throughout life. The human brain has the amazing ability to reorganise itself by forming new connections between brain cells.
This research questions and slowly transforms our conception of learning for children as well as for adults. It has brought about a better understanding of some learning disabilities such as dyslexia, dyscalculia, dyspraxia etc. as well as greater awareness about the power of emotions over our brain and the possibility of different ways of learning.
We have only begun to understand the mysteries of the human brain, yet we have enough information to know:
– The brain is incredibly complex which is why it can be challenging to obtain a diagnosis to understand a child’s difficulties.
– This complexity invites us to continuously question the way we support our students with learning difficulties.
In the Inclusive Education Department at TIS, we work daily to support our students when they face challenges at school. One of our main tasks is to collect any relevant information from the different perspectives of students, parents and teachers.
In order to take into consideration the complexity of students’ needs, we collaborate closely with different specialists – psychologists, therapists and behaviour specialists. Their different perspectives are a means to a holistic approach of the child, helping us to better understand the root of the child’s struggles as well as the possibilities of new education and learning strategies.
There is no recipe – the support provided will be different according to the student’s needs. Although the discoveries allow us to reach a diagnosis as well as a better understanding of how to implement the support, it further underlines that no matter what your expertise, everything starts with thorough observation and listening.
I am always amazed to see how a child is able to guide us in his/her difficulty when we take the time to listen to them. Thus each parent, teacher and specialist is encouraged to become an “expert in listening” to offer only the very best to our children, regardless of the circumstances.
Karine Estadieu is from France where she studied French Literature and graduated from La Sorbonne Paris. She has been working in Education for over twenty years, first as a French teacher in France, then as a second language teacher in Macao and now as Inclusive Education Coordinator at TIS. Karine is passionate about finding a way for every student to be successful.