"When I became aware of the effectiveness of BrainWare Safari, I recognized the potential contribution this program could make to the educational field. It basically provides a process by which the brain learns how to learn. BrainWare Safari is a well-designed series of brain exercises in a game format that works for all learners--school-age students aged 6 and older, as well as adults. It is truly a major breakthrough in education and has unlimited potential for individuals with disability as well as those with high-level academic ability."
Improved Academic Performance Without Teaching to the Test
BrainWare SAFARI is an award-winning software program that incorporates decades of proven clinical approaches to cognitive skills development into an engaging video-game format.
The program contains 20 exercises comprising 168 progressively challenging levels that develop and strengthen 41 cognitive (mental processing) skills.
The 41 skills fall into six categories:
- Visual Processing
- Auditory Processing
- Sensory Integration
BrainWare SAFARI does not directly teach reading or math or any specific subject matter. Rather it trains the underlying skills that enable students to learn. The skills developed in BrainWare SAFARI were selected because they are critical in the learning process. Cognitive skills development can benefit students across a broad spectrum of abilities, including typically developing, those with identified cognitive deficits and high-performing students.
Whatever your goals are for using BrainWare SAFARI, there are a few things you should know:
BrainWare SAFARI is recommended for ages 6 through adult. Children should know the alphabet and their numbers through 100, and they need to be able to use a mouse. We find that schools are most successful using the program in 2nd grade and up, in elementary and middle schools. Some schools have also successfully used the program in high school.
This cognitive training program is unique. It works on a broader range of skills than other brain training programs. There are many "brain games" on the market, but BrainWare SAFARI is not a game (although it does look like a video game and students do find it engaging). What students will refer to as "games" in BrainWare are actually exercises derived from multidisciplinary clinical therapy, drawing from speech pathology, vision development, psychology, and other disciplines.
The recommended usage for BrainWare SAFARI for most users is 3 to 5 times a week for 12 to 14 weeks, for 30 to 40 minutes per session. This means that the program can be used, like an intervention, for a semester. The reason for this recommendation is that it is the frequency of usage that has shown dramatic gains in cognitive skills and academic performance in research studies.
BrainWare SAFARI runs on a computer, either a PC or a Mac. There is software that is installed on the computer and it requires and Internet connection. The computer must have speakers. A headset and mouse are recommended. In schools, students typically use the program in a computer lab, in the classroom, in a resource setting, in an after-school program and can also use the program from home if they have a computer there.
Dr. Pat Wolfe, author of Brain Matters, explains BrainWare SAFARI this way: “Almost nothing I have seen has the ability to develop the cognitive skills that kids need to be able to think and plan. When I saw BrainWare SAFARI, I was really impressed. I am endorsing it wholeheartedly because it works and because I think it is what we really need for our kids.”
Cognitive training can benefit students across a broad spectrum of abilities, incluidng those with learning disabilities, students with ADHD and ASD, gifted students, economically disadvantaged (Title I) students, and English Language Learners, as well as typically developing students in general education. The following links provide additional information on who BrainWare Cognitive Skills Traiing works for different types of students and in different school settings.
The standard interventions provided in schools, including accommodations, curriculum modifications and learning strategies, are important ways of supporting students with learning disabilities. However, they are designed to work around the areas of disability and to enable the student to avoid areas of cognitive weakness. BrainWare SAFARI doesn't just teach children how to work around or compensate for weak processing areas. It uses students' strengths to build weaker areas and fill in cognitive gaps.
There is a growing body of research on the impact of poverty on cognitive development, and many low SES students come to our classrooms with real deficits in many areas of cognitive processing. BrainWare SAFARI helps strengthen the capacity to learn to help Title I students close the gap.
Cognitive skills play a significant role in the ability to learn a new language. BrainWare SAFARI develops cognitive processes essential for efficient language acquisition.
Using BrainWare SAFARI has been shown in multiple studies to improve cognitive functioning. Average improvements on tests like the CogAT of 12 percentile points have been demonstrated. In one school study, using BrainWare SAFARI helped more students qualify for the gifted program, over multiple years.
There is not a cure for ADHD, but there are approaches that parents and schools find useful in helping children with ADHD manage more effectively in school. BrainWare SAFARI works on cognitive skills that are typically weak for children with ADHD, includng attention (sustained and selective attention), auditory and visual working memory, and other executive functions. It is estimated that 30-50% of children with ADHD also have learning disabilities.
An Autism Spectrum Diagnosis (ASD) can mean many things and BrainWare SAFARI is not for all children with ASD. Generally, we find that the program can be used successfully by children with ASD how are at least 8 years old and/or who are higher functioning. Cognitive skill development with BrainWare SAFARI can be a piece of the puzzle for some children with an Autism Spectrum Diagnosis.
Cognitive skills are the foundation for every student's ability to learn. As schools strive for college- and career-readiness, and try to adapt to the greater emphasis on higher order thinking skills, and what are sometimes referred to as 21st Century Skills, students' capacity for learning, thinking and problem-solving are more important than ever. BrainWare SAFARI addresses the cognitive capacity students bring to the classroom to improve learning across the curriculum. Models like Universal Design for Learning help to clarify the role of cognitive skills in academic performance and approaches to instruction.
Click here to schedule an online demonstration to see the program and explore implementation approaches.