Dear Friends, We send you our heartfelt good wishes for the coming year. We thank you for your interest in the work we do, and for your continuing support. Since its inception and as you can see illustrated below, the Feuerstein Institute has brought hope to countless people all over the world and helped them reach their potential, regardless of their background, age or etiology. Over the past year, we have seen the Feuerstein Institute continue to grow and lay the groundwork in order to effect real change in the fabric of society. We are pleased to share with you in this newsletter some of the exciting recent developments from the Institute. With the support of you, our friends and partners, the seeds of change we have planted will have the opportunity to grow and lead to the more integrated society we year to see. May this year be for you and your families healthy, happy and prosperous.Prof. Reuven Feuerstein, PresidentRabbi Rafi Feuerstein, Vice-PresidentChaim Guggenheim, CEO
The Feuerstein Institute has teamed up with ETP Slovensko, a Slovakia based organization dedicated to bettering the lives of the Roma (Gypsy) people, to bring Instrumental Enrichment into Roma Schools in Slovakia. The Roma people are amongst the most destitute in the Western world. They suffer from unbelievable poverty, have been persecuted throughout history, and with a drop out rate of about 60%, are mostly uneducated. Together with ETP, we hope to bring about a dramatic change in their educational system that will inspire more Roma children to succeed, and complete their education. The pilot project has all ready begun. This inaugural group includes 20 teachers and 140 children, twenty of which who have been pre-assessed using the LPAD. The teachers will be trained in Instrumental Enrichment, and closely supervised over the course of implementation. The long term vision of this project is to provide policy makers in Slovakia with an effective tool for the education of children from marginalized Roma communities, whose abilities to be educated in standard schools using standard methods are dramatically limited. We are proud to be associated with this beautiful project, which brings hope and purpose to the Roma community.
This July the Feuerstein Institute celebrated the opening of the first Feuerstein Clinical Treatment Center in Paris, France. The establishment of the center is a collaboration between the Institute, a local Parisian parents group and the Œuvre de Secours aux Enfants (OSE), our frequent co-collaborators in France. The purpose of the center is to provide long term intervention for those children who began their treatment at our clinics in Israel and require follow-up at home, as well as therapy to those children whose families are unable to come to Israel for treatment. The center and its staff, who received intensive training by our senior training professionals, will be closely monitored by the Feuerstein Institute through regular visits, for the purpose of quality assurance. The Feuerstein Clinical Treatment Center in Paris was a direct result of the demand that we face to make the Feuerstein Method available locally to the families that so dearly need our help. The clinic also serves as a paradigm to be implemented in more locations throughout the coming years.
Preoccupation with food is a significant part of everyday life and its preparation offers an excellent basis for learning a variety of skills, important for the individual and the family. The goal of treatment in the therapy kitchen both for the individual and the group is to provide clients with the facilities to carry out essential daily-life activities. Working in the kitchen with guidance and professional support gives them an opportunity and the conditions to regain cognitive and motor skills, in addition to certain social and emotional skills, that they may have lost after their head injury.
The late Ruth and Henry Blake, of London, were keenly interested in the Cognitive Rehabilitation program at the Institute and their family applied their bequest to the upgrading of the kitchen and its equipment as well as to providing university scholarships to therapists who will carry out research on aspects of cognitive rehabilitation after brain trauma.
The Feuerstein Institute is pleased to announce that after a long and rigorous evaluation process, the Clinical Center for the Inclusion of Special Needs Children has received formal recognition and has named a 'Center for Child Development' by the Israeli Ministry of Health. As a result of this new status, children up to the age of nine will now be eligible to receive funding from their Kupot Cholim Health Insurance for their assessment and weekly treatments. This promises to help ease the financial burden for the families of our young patients.
Greetings! My name is Sarah, and I am a twenty-three year old. I emigrated to Israel as a young child with my mother in 1991, following the death of my father in Ethiopia. When we first arrived, my mother and I lived in an absorption center in Hazor, which later went onto become a military base. From there, we moved to Kiryat Malachi, where I lived for most of my childhood. My mother eventually remarried, and I have a 14 year old half brother who was born in Israel. When I was in tenth grade, my mother contracted breast cancer. It was a difficult time for my family and very hard for me in particular. However, I continued to work hard in school and persevere; I dreamed of becoming a lawyer and was determined to have the grades to make that dream a reality. I was lucky to be selected for a tough academic program in the Negev, which reinforced my determination to succeed. At the end of twelfth grade, about two weeks before my mother succumbed to her condition, I signed up to join the army. I served as a personnel officer at the Command Center in Jerusalem, while doing volunteer work with at-risk youths in Kiryat Malachi. After completing my service, I wanted to go to college, but my psychometric scores were not high enough. At this time, I was referred to a preparatory program at Tel Aviv University. I completed the preparatory program with excellent grades, but still my psychometric scores remained an obstacle to my admission. I might have despaired, if luck had not intervened. Through the preparatory program I learned of the Feuerstein Institute and the Academic Integration program, which was designed to help young adults of Ethiopian origin gain admittance to prestigious universities based on their high matriculation and preparatory grades and their own diagnostic tests, which measure learning potential. Thanks to this project, I was accepted into the Hebrew University's Faculty of Law. For me, and dozens of other students, this program literally broke down barriers and helped make dreams realities.
While self-talk like "Now we are buckling you in the car seat so we can go to the store" is common parental practice, this book by Professor Reuven Feuerstein, Professor Louis Falik, Rabbi Rafi Feuerstein and Krisztina Bohacs shows how teachers, parents, and therapists can take this to higher levels to advance language cognitive development and learning potential. Based on neuroscience and their own innovative work, the authors provide the rationale and a step-by-step process for using intentional self-talk and think-aloud methods to improve both language and cognitive development in normal and language-delayed children, as well as in older individuals with disabilities. Stories are sprinkled throughout the text to demonstrate mediated self-talk in action and the remarkable results achieved with real children. With clear guidelines for delivery, content, and timing, the crucial core of the process is to narrate thinking, action, and emotion in the presence of children without requiring their response.
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