Brain evolution is based on experiential, adaptive flexibility

What stimulates a thriving, holistic, integrated brain?

  • Sensory stimulation and complexity (time in nature)

  • A full range of human experience

  • Exercise, fresh air, good nutrition

  • Hard work, challenges with diversity that develop a love of effort

  • Process - setting goals that build step by step

  • Mindfulness that builds mind-body connection and deep inner reflection

  • Meaning

  • The full range of human feelings that lead to self-insight and empathy for others

Testimonial from JW Wilson, Executive Director of the Advanced Learning Institute:

There was a child went forth every day and the first object he looked upon, that object he became; and that object became part of him for the day, or a certain part of the day, or for many years,or stretching cycles of years.  ~Walt Whitman

Walt Whitman was right on!  As far as your child’s biology is concerned, the environment is the only wellspring it can select from to build and shape the neurological structures and chemical systems that determine his or her future. Therefore, if you want your child to live a life of meaning, and fulfillment the environments that you provide them during their developmental years are vital to their future success and joy.

Over the last 30 years at The Advanced Learning Institute, we have been conducting neurological and genetic research into the bases of learning. A key finding of our research is that in each one of us, there is a genetically implanted Learning Code, that is represented by over 7000 genes which influence all your child’s brain functions. A large percentage of these genes must be turned on before they can create long-term memory, motivation or lasting behavioral change.

The reason so many things in our world from education and health care to psychology and personal development, are not living up to our expectations, is because most of those who build the strategies to get people to learn, motivate and transform, are unaware of this scientific based Learning Code.

Running River school is one of the few schools in America which endeavors to understand this science, so that your child can develop brain structures that allow them to unlock their unique brilliance, share it with the world and live a life of curiosity, reliance, and joy. Read more about JW Wilson.

Some basic brain science:

  1. At birth, the human brain has in place only a relatively small proportion of the trillions of synapses it will eventually have. Synaptic connections are added to the brain in two basic ways:
  2. The nervous system sets up a large number of connections; experience then plays on this network, selecting the appropriate connections and removing the inappropriate ones (pruning). This happens up through adolescence.
  3. Synapse addition operates throughout the entire human lifespan and is especially important in later life. This process is not only sensitive to experience, it is actually driven by experience.
  4. Experience automatically stimulates approximately 95% of all neurons that provide the massive neural firing that is the basis for all long-term memory.  Verbal presentation in general fires only 5-10% of neurons.
  5. Memory is not a single event but a process: information, action, feedback, incubation.  Traditional learning is focused on information.