By Interactive Metronome - July 18, 2013
Meet our June Providers of the Month: Cindy Lehman & Matt Tanguay from Lehman Learning Solutions
Cindy Lehman, Director; & Matt Tanguay, Program Manager
Type of Professional: Educator
Years using IM: 6
Facility Name: Lehman Learning Solutions
Location: Seattle, WA
Population Served: Children to young adults
Tell us about your business (patients served, size of practice,services offered, how often you use IM and IM-Home in daily practice):
Lehman Learning Solutions is a privately owned, private-pay, educational therapy clinic. Our goal is tore solve learning and attention difficulties by addressing the root causes. We use several cognitive and academic programs with our students and often blend them together achievingremarkable results. Interactive Metronome is one of our core programs. We use it not only to build critical skills in attention regulation, working memory, processing, and motor planning, but we combine it with other cognitive and academic based interventions to ensure significant, lasting outcomes with our students. We utilize IM as an an in-clinic intervention as well as a home based intervention. For those students who choose to purchase IM-Home, we often do a combined program. Maintaining a therapeutic approach that is rooted in professional assessments, individualized protocols, and diligent supervision is of utmost importance to us. Because IM has so many benefits to the brain, the majority of our students are put on an IM protocol. Our office is constantly buzzing throughout the day with the sound of students doing IM!
What do you like most about IM?
Truly changing the capabilities and performance of students struggling with learning or attention challenges requires getting to the root causes in the brain. IM gives us the tool we need to make such changes. It capitalizes on neuroplasticity and provides an intervention that improves core issues that are directly related to dyslexia, AD(H)D, spectrum challenges, and inefficient processing or motor skills. So it is an amazing tool for helping a diverse number of students make lasting changes.
What do you like most about IM-Home?
We have clients from all over the area and many are not able to come into the clinic at a level that we deem necessary to create enough positive change. IM-Home is perfect for these clients. They are able to do IM at a necessary level of frequency to promote effective outcomes. We have been able to work with clients from further and further distances. Currently, we are working with a student who lives in Alaska After coming to our clinic for an initial evaluation and training, we have been able to provide long distance support. It is very satisfying to see a child in such need, without local options for interventions, make life changing growth!
What are your thoughts on the IM Universe (IM Pro 9.0 & IM-Home 3.0)?
The new background scenes are a huge hit, but our favorite aspect of the software upgrade has been the unification of IM & IM-Home. This unification has given us much more flexibility with these students when designing their protocol. One of the reasons behind the success of our clinic has been the ability to offer a diversity of how services are delivered to parents while still maintaining the level of intensity and engagement needed in order to get lasting improvement in brain function.
How have your clients reacted to the new software?
Students have generally loved the new software. A few students had pretty drastic improvements in their scores when they were introduced to the new background scenes. Having the video component of IM engages our students and keeps them working hard toward improved performance when they might otherwise find it a tedious process to get there.
What suggestions do you have for future worlds?
We think IM could have extension programs based in several different formats. IM could design extensions of the program that were based in more specific areas; such as music or sports. IM could make an extension program for musicians where they could be trained at different tempo variations, with different types of timing. Athletes could have an extension program where their timing was judged within exercise tools specific to their sport. The possibilities are endless.
Do you incorporate Best Practices with you IM training? If so, please share some of your favorites with us. (Note a “Best Practice” is using IM beyond the standard 14 exercises)
We have tried to integrate IM practice into the curriculum of teaching students other subjects and programs. We created an “IM Plus” notebook which details IM exercises that can be used for a variety of purposes. We have developed specific IM exercises for strengthening cognitive skills such as visual and auditory processing as well as exercises meant for specific academic subjects such as reading or math. We have also tailored exercises towards specific sports; such as ones based around soccer or baseball skills. More than anything, we have created several exercises that are focused on bilateral movements; we have found those to be extremely effective.
How do your clients learn about you?
Our word of mouth is our primary marketing tool. Our main goal is working towards the most positive change that we can with students. Through individual student success, parents and teachers will spread our success stories that show how effective our intervention is.
Besides IM, we also work with students with other cognitive and academic programs. Our clinic offers a great variety of services which has helped us build up a strong reputation with a diverse array of professionals. Since we are principally educators, teachers have been an especially powerful reference for us. At one school that is nearby to our clinic, several teachers have seen positive changes with our students and have each set us up with clients.
Still, parents talking to each other are still where we get most of clients. Some well connected parents have set us up with several clients.
What tips do you have for other IM Providers?
Be creative when designing protocol for clients. Tailor a client’s protocol to their individual needs, it seems risky at first but we have had great success with it. We view the original 13 IM exercises to be a great starting point from which to work out from.
Also, we have had success in talking with students about metacognition and the role of awareness in improving attention. We find it is a helpful supplement to talk with students about what it takes to have strong attention, how to maintain strong attention and how to get back on track when focus is lost. We talk about the “attention zone” that is developed through IM to be a mental zone that they can come back to when in school or when doing other activities.
Do you have what it takes to become IM Provider of the Month?
Call the IM Marketing Dept. at 877-994-6776 Option 7 to learn how you can become the next IM provider of the month. Please include your name, phone number and best time to reach you Monday – Friday 9:00 am to 5:00 pm EST.