Frequently Asked Questions

About Brain 1st

Does Brain 1st really help your brain?

Just like a muscle, the brain requires consistent training to improve its function. The Brain 1st program was developed as a tool to help change the way we learn, move, and feel by “exercising” the brain with specific activities. These activities are based on years of research and trials that demonstrate structural changes in the brain with daily practice of activities just like the ones included in the Brain 1st Program.

Do you have a lite version or a trial version to try?

Yes, you can sign up to learn more about what our program includes by selecting the “Free Trial” button in the top right hand corner of your screen.

What ages is this program made for?

The program is created for students ranging from grade K-5 (age 5-10 years old). It is broken into three age groups with age-specific content for each: Grade K-1 / 2-3 / 4-5.

Can individuals who are older than Grade 5 still use the program?

Yes! Even though we have it scripted and geared for specific age ranges, the oldest age range can benefit older youth (adults can benefit too!)

If I teach more than one class or group of students, do I have to purchase the Brain 1st Program more than once?

No. If you require Brain 1st for more than one classroom/child, you have the ability to create up to 3 specific classrooms and track each of them separately.

Do you offer this program in other languages?

Not yet, though we hope to expand to different languages in the coming year.

Do you have any upcoming workshops or seminars?

We host virtual and in-person seminars periodically which will be advertised on our social media. If you would like to host Brain 1st for a professional development workshop with your school or district, please contact us at support@brain1st.ca

About the Subjects

I’m not sure if my student(s) and/or child(ren) has retained primitive reflexes as they have not been tested. Is it still safe to use the Primitive Reflex course?

Yes! This course is safe and gentle, whether or not the reflexes are present. If they are not present, the movements are still great to help improve coordination, balance and control of the body.

What is mindfulness? Why do we practice it in the Brain 1st Program?

The most widely used definition of Mindfulness is the act of paying attention, on purpose, in the present moment, and without judgement. It is coming back from our “wandering mind” to be in what is happening right now, with kindness and curiosity.

 

The practice of mindfulness may seem confusing as the ability to remember our past experiences and plan for our future is an important part of being human! It is what allows us to learn from our mistakes or prepare for activities to come. The aim of mindfulness is to notice when we are attaching unhelpful emotions to past and future thoughts, for example, when we remember a pleasant moment and feel sadness that the moment did not last, or when we have a presentation coming up and feel nervous thinking about all the possible ways it could go. Mindfulness invites us to look at past and future thoughts with objectivity and curiosity, as if we were watching our thoughts play out in a movie. This way of thinking can allow us to bring important insights with us into the present moment.

Why teach mindfulness to children?

Children are naturally mindful. When a child is playing, it is an immersive experience. When a child falls, the emotion of pain and sadness arises. Once that’s over, play begins again. Placing emotion on past or future experiences is not yet a factor in their moment-to-moment life. It is when we begin to grow older that we develop judgments and emotions to our past and future experiences. Mindfulness can be easier to develop and retain while these young brains are developing and already experiencing some forms of present-moment awareness. This is why we start our programming at age 5.

Is mindfulness a religious practice?

Mindfulness is not a religious practice in itself, though it is a part of some religious practices. Mindfulness is a basic human capacity to be available to what is happening – not yesterday, not tomorrow, but in this very moment.

What equipment is required for the Physical Literacy component of the Brain 1st Program?

The Brain 1st Physical Literacy activities recommend equipment that would commonly be available to most P.E. classes (such as hoops, bean bags, skipping ropes, dice, balls, and cones).

Is the Physical Literacy component meant for P.E. classes?

The Brain 1st Physical Literacy component is great for larger spaces and is a wonderful integration to a Gym or P.E. class as well as other subjects and school settings. These activities require little to no set up so students will maximize their time spent moving and building functional strength, mobility, and agility.

Signing up

What is the difference between a School and Educator license?

When subscribing as an Educator, you are paying for one license and have full control over your account. When subscribing as a School, the person who subscribes (typically the principal) may pay for multiple licenses at once and distribute those licenses to each individual educator by email. This person acts as a “License Manager” for the licenses purchased and has a dashboard where it is easy to manage each educators’ licenses in one location (such as adding/removing users, viewing each educator’s progress, and downloading a summary of each educator’s usage). As a license manager, you do not personally have a license yourself unless you assign yourself one by adding your email address to an available license.

Is there a bulk purchase discount?

There is no discount available if multiple classrooms would like to purchase at once. If you are a district looking for more details on district pricing, please contact us at support@brain1st.ca

If I am purchasing for a school and cannot pay with a credit card, how do I subscribe?

Please send us an email at support@brain1st.ca with the number of licenses you wish to purchase and we will send you a purchase order form. Please note this is for bulk purchases (10 or more licenses) only.

Is the subscription one calendar year in length from the time I sign up?

The membership is activated for 1 year after it is purchased. If you purchase a number of licenses through the “School” sign up option, you can add/remove/change users at your convenience, so you are in control of who is using the program at all times!

Getting Started

Why are the lessons in each unit staying the same? Do they switch at all?

Just like practicing any sport or learning something new in school, learning requires repetition. In this case, the repetition of each of the units in our courses is essential for the brain to build and change. Each week you will be introduced to a new topic or set of activities which will be repeated a total of 5 times before moving on to the next unit.

Can I use multiple courses at once with my students, such as Mindfulness in the morning and Brain Bootcamp in the afternoon?

Yes! Even if using multiple courses, Brain 1st will still continue to track and play the appropriate class in each of your desired courses.

Do I have to practice every day to see results?

The Brain 1st Program is most effective if played 4-5 days per week. Soon enough, it will soon be one of your favourite parts of the school day!

One of my students has a number of challenges and I would like to slowly assist them with some of the moves. Is that okay?

Definitely! If it is within your professional scope to give extra guidance in that manner to a child, then it will benefit them to give extra cues and assistance if you are following along with the instructions provided within the videos.

I am trying to access the next lessons in Brain Bootcamp and Primitive Reflexes, and each time I get "this lesson unlocks in X hours”. Why is this?

The brain requires rest between lessons as it is generating new pathways and getting stronger! We don’t want to overwork your mind, so we have locked each lesson so that the brain receives rest and recovery before moving on.

When I was able to sign in last night it took me to an intro video to show my class, but when I went to find it the next day to show the students, I couldn't find it anywhere on site. Where can I look for that video to show my class?

When you create a new classroom, the introduction video is only available on your dashboard until you begin a new course. After that, the video will be available in your Toolbox to refer back to at any time!

In the interest of time and/or class ability, can I break up a video lesson into 2 parts, where I play the first half in the morning and the next half in the afternoon?

It is best practice to complete the full 8-10 minute video in one go as the brain requires consistent training. However in the interest of time it’s better to make anything work than nothing at all!

I have 3 children who each require different videos as they are in different age groups (they are 5, 9, and 10 years old). As your content is age-specific, how can I play the right courses for each of them?

You can create up to 3 classrooms in your account, and each classroom tracks its own progress. For example, for your 5 year old, you would create one for them in the “K-1” age group, and then add a new classroom for the 9 and 11 year old. To add an additional classroom:

  • Go to “Classrooms” on your left hand sidebar
  • Click “Create a new classroom”
  • Fill in that new classroom name and toggle the age group you would like to select (for a 9 year old you would select grade “4-5”) > Create classroom
  • Go back to “Classrooms” and select the new classroom you just created

Voila! You are now working with two classrooms, one for each child. To delete a classroom, you can select the three dots beside your classroom name and in the classroom settings, select “I agree, deactivate!” > Deactivate Classroom.

How can parents sign up at home with their kids?

This program is created for teachers to help improve readiness to learn in students, but we realize that parents are also looking for resources for their children to bring focus, calm, and positive behaviours to their environment. That’s why as a parent, you can register to use the program at home with your children! Simply register as “Educator/Homeschool” and instead of entering a school, enter an address instead! Repetition is key, that’s why we have made it for a classroom setting; however, this may be of benefit to anyone with children who ensures the course videos are played 4-5 days a week.

Is there a maximum number of students this can be used on in a classroom?

No. One subscription will cover an entire classroom as the subjects contain follow-along videos and activities made to accommodate a group setting, no matter what the size.

Can I share this program with my students at home as we continue distance/hybrid learning?

Beginning in September 2020, teachers will be able to easily assign Brain 1st videos and activities to their students remotely by simply copying and pasting a link to their online classroom platform! This remote learning capability will be an easy way to help bring consistency to students’ learning and help them get ready to learn, no matter where they are.

How do I decide which course to do first?

Your toolbox section contains helpful handouts that help you while you get started with Brain 1st. One of those documents is a “Choose Your Course” guide. Here’s our suggested format:

  • As a general note, if your kids are between grades K-3 and/or have any learning and behaviour challenges – we would suggest beginning with the Primitive Reflex course, and Brain Bootcamp afterwards. 
  • If your child is in grade 4-8 and has no known challenges, Brain Bootcamp is a great choice to get students focused and ready for the day.
  • You may pair either of these with the Mindfulness course, or do the Mindfulness course after completing either of these courses! The videos are all less than 10 minutes so it is based on what you have the time for. 

Make sure to play the program 4-5 days a week to see results. The easiest way may be to begin the day with Brain 1st to get them focused and ready to go!

I am a teacher who teaches in two classrooms, and have a co-teacher in each class. How do I share my classroom with each teacher I split a class with?

If you share a classroom with another educator, that’s no problem! You can link that class classroom with another educator so no one misses a beat. Simply click on the three dots by your classroom name and under the header “Link with Another User,” fill in the email address that you would like to link classrooms with. Then, hit “Update Classroom”.

Can I look at today's video and then replay tomorrow for my students in the class?

Absolutely, you can always play a video and go back to re-play it. Courses that you have played you will always have access to!

How do I edit a classroom?

By clicking the three dots beside the classroom name on your left-hand toolbar, you can change the name of the classroom, share that classroom with another teacher, or deactivate the classroom.

How do I add a classroom?

On your left hand toolbar, under “Classroom”, click on the dropdown bar. Hit “Create New Classroom”, where you will then be prompted to enter the classroom name and age group. Then, simply hit “Create Classroom” and you are on your way! You can create up to 3 classrooms.

What if I accidentally selected the wrong age group?

Deactivate that classroom and create a new one. By clicking the three dots beside the classroom name on your left-hand toolbar, you can change the name of the classroom, share that classroom with another teacher, or deactivate the classroom.

Do you have any questions?

We are happy to help!