Brain Power’s Innovator & Learning Series: Adding Up To Success
Brain Power’s Innovator & Learning Series math programs (2023) provide a formula for creating successful future leaders.
If you are a mildly anxious parent anywhere in the province of Ontario, you woke up on October 20th to what can only be described as alarming news. The Education Quality and Accountability Office released information about last spring’s testing, which found that only “59 percent of Grade 3 students met the provincial standard in math — equivalent to an A or B — while just 47 percent of Grade 6 students did.” (The Toronto Star)
The rhythm of our daily lives depends for its pendular regularity on the science of mathematics. It is responsible for our ability to balance a monthly budget, take on a home improvement project, time videos or measure the accuracy of a recipe. In hindsight, it turns out that stern Mrs. Vardi (my Grade 6 math teacher) had a point in drilling into me the nauseating phrase, “You’ve got to know math!” And the earlier the better, since mathematics takes hold most readily in young minds.
This insight underlies Brain Power’s Innovator & Explorer Learning Series 2023, a cluster of workshops designed and led by expert instructors to prepare young leaders for the future. With campuses in Vaughan, Hamilton and, most recently, North Toronto, Brain Power, a 30-year leader in enrichment for high-potential kids, fosters in students the capacity to become independent and creative thinkers, exceptional writers and resilient leaders. Brain Power’s singular approach to teaching critical thinking, language and math allows its students to excel in high school and university applications, interviews, and to develop the skills needed to succeed in a globally changing world.
“When you think about it, math hides in plain sight all around us,” says Brain Power CEO and instructor, Vanessa Serra Iarocci. “As part of the specialized math programs in our new Innovator & Explorer Learning Series, students will investigate how math imposes its laws on the world through geometrical patterns found in nature and art. Consequently, they will be equipped with logical thinking strategies necessary for mastering complex visual models and puzzles.”
Brain Power’s proprietary math workshops include Champions — Contest Math, Math Masters, Brain Designers, and Spatial Reasoning. The first-of-its-kind Champions — Contest Math is designed to complement Brain Power’s core math programs. It is led by renowned Math Olympiad trainer and double-PhD-holder Sana Spektor, who maintains that the program prepares students for AMC, CEMC, Caribou and Kangaroo, among other global contests. It also teaches students how to apply the skills they acquire to a variety of Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics (STEM) fields (such as data science and artificial intelligence).
Specifically, Brain Power’s popular Math Masters program challenges the minds of young mathematicians through puzzles, visual models, problem-solving, number mysteries and art. The Spatial Reasoning program, on the other hand, exercises skills that are necessary for acing gifted testing, such as visual memory, surface development, object & shape rotation and perspective skills.
“Our Spatial Reasoning program would be particularly useful for those contemplating a career in engineering,” says Serra Iarocci. “Further, it provides our candidates with an advantage over others seeking admittance into the prestigious Johns Hopkins University’s Center for Talented Youth (a summer enrichment program). This intervention is possible only because we understand the needs of high potential students and how they learn.”
This article explores only a few ways in which Brain Power is helping students meet their potential in a world challenged by many educational stressors. And if the disconcerting news about dismal math scores across the province can be taken as a harbinger, then the time to act is now! Brain Power has heeded this call to action by giving youth the tools they need to stand out and make their mark on the world. After all, “The best way to predict your future is by creating it.” (Abraham Lincoln).