USE PUZZLES to DEVELOP LEARNING SKILLS

Children have to be ready to learn!
I have used puzzles for over 35 years. Puzzles are a great teaching aid. I use them for younger
children as well as for older students. Puzzles are always a big success. They build up the
visual skills to such an extent that the child finds word recognition and reading easy.
hildren will learn planning! anticipation "looking forward to# and will learn endurance! to
carry on even if they do not like it. If the task is to tiresome! too difficult! help them without
them noticing that you are helping. $ncourage them by saying% &'fter that we are going to
do...& "(omething they like doing so they can look forward to something pleasant.#
)e use puzzles for activating the brain to learn to work in order! step by step.
This is how it works%
*ook at the puzzle. 'nalyse the puzzle. )hat is in the picture+ )hat is the focus point
"colour! main picture! part of a picture! shape etc.#+
,ecide where to start% at the corners! top or bottom edges or build up a picture...
*ook for the pieces needed to follow the plan.
The child has to think &)hat do I need+& and then look for the particular piece.
(ee a video with a step by step description of the process! delivered by a young boy.
www.youtube.com-watch+v.*kxl/01P2hI3feature.youtu.be
)hen we plan to write a story we imagine "we picture# the story line in our mind! for that we
use our right side of the brain. To analyse our thinking we break the imagined picture into
parts and then we have to transfer our thoughts into sentences and words. 4or that we need
the cooperation of both the right and left hemispheres. To actually put our thoughts and words
on paper we have to coordinate our hand movement with the eye movements! we have to
make our muscles work and finally to have a working feed back to guide our hand
movements. This whole process would be impossible without the coordinated work of both
hemispheres.
orpus ollosum is closely involved in cerebral organisation.
orpus ollosum is a thick bridge of neural tissue in the middle of the
brain connecting the two hemispheres allowing communication between
both hemispheres.
orpus ollosum transfers motor! sensory and cognitive information
between the two hemispheres.
orpus ollosum maintains the balance of arousal and attention between
the two sides of the brain. It enables each hemisphere to contribute to the
integrated function of the brain.
The information about the eye movements come to both hemispheres
from the eye muscles and from retinas of both eyes. The orpus
ollosum helps to integrate the slightly different information from the
two eyes.
orpus ollosum seems to maintain extremely fine and rapid inter5
hemisphere transfer of information necessary for smooth ocular
functioning.
Puzzle will help to develop essential visual skills for learning.
4ast and accurate eye movement from one point to another 5 puzzles will develop that
$ye teeming skill 5 the eyes will learn to work together
$ye hand coordination 5 the eyes will learn to move with the hand
6ecognising differences in direction 5 up, down, low, left and right…
6ecognise position and se7uence 8 start at a distinct point and work on in sequence
Peripheral visual skills 8 looking to the left and right side of the table for the puzzle pieces,
eyes have to learn to move to the far right and left and back again
4igure5ground perception 8 the piece of the puzzle (picture) you are looking for stands
out from the background (readiness for scanning)
's the hand reaches for each piece of the puzzle! the child will coordinate the
hand or hands with the eyes. The eyes have to move "focus# from place to
place to look for the piece needed and then they have to look and focus to
place "to fit# the piece into the right place.
'll these skills have to be reliable and flexible. The child has to be able to
coordinate visual information with other sensory inputs and sustain visual
attention. The puzzles are excellent for adults after a stroke.
/ow difficult the puzzles should be depends on the ability of the child. (tart with simple
puzzles to make it fun for the child and for yourself. Try to get new puzzles all the time and
replace some of the puzzles you have used before with new ones.
)hen you give your child a new puzzle! watch very closely how he will attempt to place the
pieces together. ,oes he have some strategies or does he pick the pieces randomly! does he
try to lock them together without looking at the picture! colour etc. 9ou probably have to give
him some clues. (tart with the edges! or with picture parts and build one bit at a time etc.
Hana Jay BEd BSpclEd [Pedagogy, Language, Logopedy, History]
Charles Uni Prague, Ust: ;ni "zech 6ep#
www.<ayseducation.com