The Reading Lab
A Division of Walston Speech Language & Reading Clinic, Inc.
In some cases, particularly where there is evidence of cognitive impediments to reading not related to auditory processing —
such as visual processing, attention issues related to sensory integration issues, longer term retention issues — The Reading
Lab will add BrainWare Safari into a student’s cognitive skills training protocol -- for students aged 6-18 years of
The Reading Lab provides BrainWare Safari with professional direction and oversight, unavailable with other home
versions of this popular program. It was added to our comprehensive array of program offerings to help our students
reinforce the cognitive skills begun with the required Cognitive Skill Builder Program and to add more visual processing and
thinking skills to the mix. Our students typically work on home computers (web access required) for 3-5 days a week, 30-45
minutes a day, for 10-12 weeks or in the Lab. This program is also part of the Summer Camp experience.
BrainWare incorporates models of brain function that originate in work published in 1949 by Dr. Donald Hebb of McGill
University. Skills build in a learning pyramid, in which basic skills enable higher-order skills to develop. If any fundamental
skills are missing or deficient, more advanced skills cannot Develop the exercises incorporate the current scientific
understanding of brain function to improve basic cognitive skills have been used by learning clinicians in one-on-one
therapies -- often using paper and pencil -- for decades. Over time, various clinicians gradually assembled and integrated
different regimens of exercises that provided measurable improvement in cognitive skills. Safari has converted these
exercises into a compelling, interactive digital format.
How It Works
BrainWare Safari develops 41 essential cognitive skills related to attention, memory, processing and sensory integration. The
exercises place repetitive demands on deficient functions and present increasing levels of difficulty. Demands are placed in
an integrated approach referred to as “cognitive loading.” This approach drives skills more quickly to an automatic,
subconscious level of processing.
Cognitive Skills Targeted by BrainWare Safari
Exercises that incorporate the current scientific understanding of brain function to improve basic cognitive skills have been
used by clinicians in one-on-one therapies for decades. BrainWare Safari develops 41 cognitive skills, considered the most
critical for fast and effective learning. BrainWare's’s exercises place repetitive demands on deficient functions and present
increasing levels of difficulty. Demands are placed in an integrated approach referred to as “cognitive loading” -- forcing the
brain to automate a function, do it subconsciously when confronted with two simultaneous tasks. This approach drives
skills more quickly to an automatic, subconscious level of processing.
The 41 cognitive skills developed by BrainWare are in these broad categories:
• Sustained Attention -- staying engaged.
• Selective Attention -- ability to avoid distractions.
• Divided Attention -- the ability to focus on two skills at
once, such as listening to the teacher and writing down
• Visual Discrimination and Processing Speed
• Visual Sequential Processing
• Visualization, Figure Ground, Span, Directionality
Auditory Processing Skills
• Auditory Discrimination and Processing Speed
• Auditory Sequential Processing
• Hand to eye integration -- for writing
• Auditory-motor and auditory-visual integration
• Short-Term and Working Memory
• Visual Spatial Memory
• Long-Term Memory
• Sequential Memory
• Logic and ReasoningHere are some of the benefits from BrainWare Safari as reported by parents and educators:
• Planning and Conceptual Thinking
• Problem Solving and Strategic Thinking
• Decision Speed
Improved attention span and focus
Attention stamina is a learned skill in BrainWare Safari. By helping the brain to do subconsciously what previously Improved focus
required concentration and effort, BrainWare Safari helps make staying engaged less exhausting and therefore easier to
Being able to avoid distractions and stay on task is an increasingly important learning skill as your child progresses Faster and more accurate task completion
through the grades. Learning how to tune out so-called "distractors" is a major exercise theme in Safari. Improved
cognitive skills that school-work more interesting and less exhausting, also helps focus and the ability to stay engaged.
Faster processing, better retention (reducing the need for repetition) and improved focus skills combine to improve Increased retention of learned materials
learning productivity, another major target area of this learning software.
BrainWare Safari improves visual and auditory processing to improve the quantity and accuracy of information taken More positive overall attitude to learning and life
in, either in class or when reading, and it strengthens all the memory skills required to store this information.
Students tend to feel better about themselves, that they are performing close to their potential. It's a positive Who Can Benefit From BrainWare Safari
development that generally leads to a more confident and positive learner. Each individual starts with different
strengths and weaknesses in cognitive skills. As cognitive skills are not the only factors that can impact behaviors such
as the above; individual experiences and results will vary.
BrainWare Safari is a ground-breaking software that works on a wide range of cognitive skills providing many opportunities
to help children. Here are some examples of students who benefit from BrainWare Safari:
Many students spend much too much time on their homework and other studies. They are often also slow test takers. Lack of Focus -- Easily Distracted
While Cognitive Skill Builder is a better choice if slow reading or having to constantly re-read for reading
comprehension, BrainWare Safari improves retention the first time through, processing speed and efficiency, focus
and logic, and all critical to good homework productivity.
BrainWare Safari helps students avoid distraction with specific exercises that include distractors -- to this extent, focus Poor Organization Skills
is a learned skill. But it goes beyond this, by improving processing speed and retention skills so that students find the
material more manageable and interesting, thereby holding their interest without the normal exhaustion.
Being organized requires an integrated intellect. If you struggle to pull things together in your head, it is hard to be Visual Processing Issues
organized outside it. Safari's memory and attention skills dramatically improve organizations skills also.
A small number of children have eye tracking, peripheral vision and other visual processing issues that impede their Grades Not Matching Intellect
development as readers. BrainWare Safari has a large number of visual processing exercises.
Test taking skills are learning skills. To do well on a test you need to process efficiently, stay on task, retain what you Weak Memory
are reading the first time, and have decent long term memory for fact recall. BrainWare Safari addresses all of these
"It goes in one ear and out the other!" There are lots of reasons for this. It could be a data capture problem -- the
student cannot process fast enough to take the information in accurately. Or it could be a retention issue -- one
captured it is not held. BrainWare Safari devotes a large portion of its exercise time to these two functions.