Thursday, February 14, 2013

Life's Distractions

Hey Tech-Ninjas!

Hope your all well. Obviously I've not written in a while.

A whole lot of good stuff is going on in my life.

Of special significance and exciting is the wrestling team that I help coach is kicking butt.  We only have 10 wrestlers, of a possible 14 starters, and we took second place at our Conference Tournament last weekend. We had 3 first places, 3 second places, and 3 third places. Mere points from over all first place. Now we are working extra hard to get ready for our Regional Tournament where we expect to kick more butt.

In the face of the stupid IOC discontinuing wrestling in the Olympics, my fellow coach DeWitt Driscoll and I are helping these high-school wrestlers develop discipline, perseverance, work-ethic, pride, and sportsmanship.

This means I am running or lifting with my wrestlers every morning before school, and also practicing every day after school for two hours. I'm whipped, and frankly don't have a whole lot extra in the tank to write my blog. I'm not as young as them after all...

Fear not, it's temporary!

So keep doing all your good work in your own communities, schools, and families, and I'll be writing again soon.


Monday, February 4, 2013

Exercise your Visual Processing Skills!

I have a new favorite app! It's called Fit Brains, and it's made by Vivity Labs. This app really targets so many Visual Processing skills, and should make any Occupational Therapist happy!  It is initially free, and after a set number of uses, you then need to subscribe for 3 months, 6 months, or a year, all at different costs.  There is also a web-based version, but I've not investigated that yet.

The Fit Brains Trainer is a scientifically-designed app that provides a collection of fun brain games, personalized training sessions, and visual tools to help you improve your brain's performance. The Trainer utilizes an innovative adaptive learning system that automatically scales the level of each brain game to your appropriate level.

Fit Brains Trainer includes more than 360 unique training sessions that are designed to enhance your Memory, Processing Speed, Concentration, Problem Solving and Visual skills. Use the Fit Brains Trainer a few minutes daily to improve the performance of your brain.


As an OT, I found many of the games familiar... they remind me of some of my Visual Processing assessment tools, and worksheets that I used early on in my therapy. 

When you finish a game, it reports your Average Reaction time, a ratio for your correct answers, and your Accuracy percentage. At the same time the software informs you about the next task you are about to move onto, and what it skill it challenges. 

Your standings

You are also able to look at how you perform next to your peer group. Evidently I have pretty weak Concentration, and my speed is only average. In my defense, ummm, I was tired when I was learning this. I will get faster, I promise!

Overal Performance

The app also tracks your overall performance, and so if you are looking to document a student's performance, you will have true data.  


More Games

And still more Games!
The app is compatible with iPhone 3GS, iPhone 4, iPhone 4S, iPhone 5, iPod touch (3rd generation), iPod touch (4th generation), iPod touch (5th generation) and iPad. Requires iOS 4.3 or later. This app is optimized for iPhone 5.

I am finding this game/app to be addicting. Granted I like this sort of thing, but that bodes well as a therapeutic intervention, and the fact that it collects performance data makes it all the more useful for therapists. 

One last point is that once you purchase a subscription, the app writers provide a function to move the app onto all your devices, so you don't have to pay for a subscription for each device.  Nice!

Happy Therapy!