Arrowsmith is a unique method of education rooted in neuroscientific research. It uses a concept called neuroplasticity. Neuroplasticity is based on the growth mindset. It is the concept of “retraining” the brain. It is the belief that the brain can reorganize neural pathways based on new experiences. This helps students with learning disabilities to overcome their challenges with mental strength training exercises rather than work-around strategies.

The work of the Arrowsmith program is grounded in peer reviewed research that can be found on the Arrowsmith website.

Immaculate Heart of Mary houses one of only 28 sites nationwide. The program began in 1980 and is based out of Toronto, Canada. There are sites all over the world.

Why Arrowsmith?

Arrowsmith can target and strengthen specific parts of our brains. Like machines at a gym designed to strengthen different parts of our bodies, Arrowsmith’s cognitive exercises are designed to strengthen different cognitive functions.

These exercises can enhance:

  • underlying functions for literacy and numeracy
  • processing speed
  • memory
  • capacities to communicate, problem solve, reason, self-organize
  • emotional strength, resilience and intelligence  

When cognitive capacity is enhanced, life and learning becomes easier, and ultimately, transformative.

How Arrowsmith Works

Based on neuroscience research, the program addresses learning disabilities by identifying and strengthening weak cognitive capacities.

Most programs for students with learning disabilities focus on teaching compensatory skills or strategies, or makes changes in content to be mastered. Instead the Arrowsmith Program focuses on rebuilding the learning capacity of the student by repairing or creating new pathways in the brain.

The Arrowsmith Founder on TEDx

Watch the founder of the Arrowsmith program talk about her fundamentally different approach to education on her TEDx Talk.

A great example of what brain training can achieve. Since her childhood, she suffered from several severe mental disabilities. But she did not give up. Instead she invented her own method to rewire her brain and make the healthy parts of her brain perform the functionality that the damaged ones cannot do.

Watch the TEDx talk to learn about the history of Arrowsmith.