The Woman Who Changed Her Brain: Barbara Arrowsmith-Young at TEDxToronto

Published 2013-04-27

All Comments (21)
  • she had a painful experience as a child yet she has delivered an amazing story of overcoming her handicap... she's so inspiring, awesome.
  • @bennybenny7382
    Brain change is a very real thing. I came from a bad upbringing didn't get many qualifications, never read a book, and had to have a side assistant teachers to assist me in every lesson, got diagnosed as autistic and add. This planted wrong programs in my brain and I believed it because I was only 8 years old. I was scared and felt extremely suicidal as everyone else seemed to have it easier. This made me not want to go out places and I decided to sit in doors playing video games to escape the world and because of this I somehow came across brain plasticity, this planted a new seed of hope and I decided to believe in it, because if people can change the size of their muscles, why cant they learn new skills and change other things too?.. I took a fitness course and the first week I did pretty bad because I was still stuck in that school mindset and the teachers said I should leave because I am not learning anything. This scared me because I needed to do something with my future so I put in the effort and within a few months I was literally flying through my assignments as if I had done it my whole life, students was even asking me for help and the teachers was quite shocked (I was around 23 when I finished so I wasnt exactly a child).. I managed to come out with the second best grades in my group from people who was older and more experiences than me.. I am now above average intelligence despite how disgustingly bad I did at school. Brain plasticity is real guys.
  • @lizogrady8611
    This is not just for children--the exercises work for ALL ages! My 73-year-old father is the oldest student in the Arrowsmith program and is having incredible results! These exercises need to be part of general education at all age levels. Our brains can change and grow throughout our entire lives. There is no "too old"!!
  • What a miracle! She needs to reach the many special education teachers with her message as possible!
  • @ComicalDog
    "Every time we learn something new, our brain changes. With focused effort, we can intentionally rewire our brains to overcome learning challenges and reach new heights of achievement." - Barbara Arrowsmith Young
  • @lornatough9563
    We shared the same childhood dysfunctions, we both had fathers that changed our way of thinking - our only difference she knew her diagnosis, I only learnt of mine 2 years ago and I am now 60. This woman has so inspired me - my father taught me all those games she herself used, I still do them to this day and I am sure that is why I made it thus far. This talk brought me the validation of me. I cannot thank you enough xx
  • @Lelabear
    So interesting! I realize the neuroplasticity of my brain when I was in college and an excellent teacher realized I had dyslexic tendencies. She took me to the speech coach who determine which letters I automatically switched around and then taught me how to correct the mistake before it happened. Took a few years before the problems vanished, but eventually my brain corrected itself.
  • @sandraheusel3769
    Having been one of the founding members of Eaton Arrowsmith School and Eaton Cognitive Improvement Centre in Vancouver, BC, I have seen Barbara's work, the Arrowsmith Program, change hundreds of lives. It's definitely not easy to change the brain, but with sustained, specific practice it is very much possible. Barbara is speaking at Neuroplasticity and Education: Strengthening the Connection in Vancouver on October 25th if any of you are interested. Should be a great day.
  • @GiniCurv
    I've read "The Man with the Shattered World" at least three times, maybe more. He was so severely disabled it exhausted him to write a single sentence and reading never failed to give him a headache, but he persevered over many years to piece together an entire book about cognitive disability as perceived from the inside. He describes the moment of horror waking up in the hospital realizing that the newspaper with the foreign alphabet he couldn't read was actually his own language.

  • @8acenelson
    What a humbling, magnificent talk.  

    The part about reading philosophy is especially impressive.  I have a BA in Philosophy with High Honors, and I've never read and understood 100 pages of philosophy in a row, whether by one or many philosophers.  Understanding two pages in a row was a real achievement for me. Philosophy's often tough sledding, even for the practiced eye.

    It seems to me Ms. Arrowsmith-Young had a brilliant mind before she overcame her blockage, because she figured out how to change her brain while she was still in the  strange foggy world of her youth. And obviously her brilliance has shone more and more brightly since. 

    The implications of brain plasticity for education are unfathomable.  I taught for 30 years and how I wish I'd know about this when I was teaching.  We have to pursue it and find out how we can literally help students mold their brains for the better.

    There must be so much more to her story.  I'm anxious to read her book.
  • @r44time
    I could not understand the complexity of my texts in college so in order to get meaning from the texts I had to take notes as I was reading, highlight my notes, and keep reviewing my notes. Then eventually I was able to get meaning from text and complete all my classes for my degree. I think these strategies changed my brain because I did not give up.
  • @pinsolomons
    She just touches the surface of her accomplishments in this video. She works with kids who need to reconnect various parts of their brains that have, for whatever reason, failed to connect naturally. The methods she uses for hyperactive kids with very short attention spans was the most impressive I've ever read. Please look up her institute and whatever youtube vids of her therapies if you know someone who is struggling.
  • I just wanna give her a tight hug.
    She has became her own hero, respect and salute to her
  • @samsonward2247
    A movie should absolutely be made about her life. Not only is her story very inspiring and educational about the way our brains work and how we can overcome mental difficulties, I'm literally tearing up just from her describing being able to read for the first time 😢
  • @bevkurtin
    Magnificent! I was a natural speed reader from the first time I learned HOW to read. My "wonderful" teachers told me that I had to say each word while moving my lips if I were to be able to absorb what I was reading. They totally ruined my ability to read until my mid-40s when I returned to college to finish my bachelor's degree. Little did I know I would wind up with a PhD in computer science. The faster I read, the more I comprehended. Now retired, I read 3 or 4 books at a time. Ahhh...
  • I think what this testimony teaches us is that, not only our brain can change, but also us. We can be the better versions of ourselves in all possible ways.
  • Brilliant Barbara! My son attends your school and in only two months of doing the Arrowsmith work, we have noticed positive changes in his self-esteem, happiness and spelling! Taking him away from the constant barrage of negativity in the public school system was the best thing we have ever done! He was in the special ed class for kids with learning disabilities but was blamed on a daily basis for not being able to learn! How much frustration can the students bear before a change is made? Thx
  • @harim6401
    Truly inspiring,not only for those having learning disabilities but for each one of us for surpassing our limitations.
  • @a.v.s9939
    This is definitely a life lesson. This is one of the people that makes the rest of the people want to live, and thrive and learn, and be better. She gives inspiration and transmits feeling of sadness, hope and desire, that few people achieve. She is a real hero and a genius, has she given other conferences? What is the tittle of her book? I loved this TEDx talk very much. Congratulations, Ms. Barbara Arrowsmith-Young. 
  • @Chantieluvs
    Her story is simply amazing. A miracle? Maybe. But the brain is capable of miraculous changes. <3