The Extra Lesson, an interview

The Extra Lesson, an interview


Sara: Thank you all for coming today to talk about the Extra Lesson.

My first question is who could benefit from the Extra Lesson Programme?
Lindy: The Extra Lesson Programme works with the development of the child, and since development is never a complete process for any of us, anybody can benefit. But the person who would likely need this support, is someone who has a cluster of issues that are not as yet sufficiently integrated. How well do I embody my left, my right, – how well have I attained spatial organisation? How is my time orientation – my processes? How is my sense of balance, the integration of midlines, and early movement patterns, reflexes etc. When we see a cluster of things that don’t sit comfortably in the body, the Extra Lesson approach can be very helpful.
Sigi: I would summarise it as there is a neurological-developmental delay. And then we can ask – what are the symptoms of this delay? How do we know that that there is a delay?
Lut: For the young child, we say that we start from the age of seven, because up until that time, the development that we are recapitulating is still happening, so we don’t want to interfere too soon. Having said that, if it is very obvious early on that things aren’t integrating, then an individualised programme can be made for a younger child.
Sara: Thank you, I think you’ve already touched on this. But what would be some of those indicators be that a person may benefit from Extra Lesson, that it would be the programme of choice?
Lut: Learning difficulties, children who are struggling with reading, writing and/or math, but also children where it’s more of social picture, that they can’t be in the classroom, be in relationship with other children, make friends easily. It can be a sensory picture, where the sensory processing is such that they can’t actually maintain a whole day in a busy classroom. That can cause anxiety or can show as behavioural difficulties. Sometimes there is also a diagnoses of Dyslexia, Dyspraxia, ADHD, ASD etc.
Sigi: It could present itself as a disruptive child, a clumsy child. A student who is fidgety, who constantly bumps into things, who stumbles in his speech, who cannot catch a ball, who cannot write neatly. A child who always wants to play with younger or older children, and not with his peers or who doesn’t like going to school.
Sara: What is actually involved in the Extra Lesson?
Sigi: It starts with the detailed assessment because the programme for that individual child is based on what the assessment shows. In the assessment, we want to establish the root cause of the difficulty, and then tailor make the programme for that.
Sara: How would you establish the root cause?
Lut: Through the questionnaires that parents fill in, we get a picture of the very early development from pregnancy onward. So we have a picture of all the milestones that this child has achieved – when and how. And how parents experience their child’s sensory processing ability. This tells us about the lived experience of the child and family.
Then there is the assessment. A two, to two and half hours assessment in the form of playful games and little activities. We look at what the child can do, and where they struggle to do certain tasks. All that put together gives us a picture of where they are at. And out of that we can also refer on to other professionals. Sometimes there might be a nutritional/digestive or medical problems, or a structural, muscular skeletal, where we feel the osteopath can help. Sometimes the visual or auditory processing show up as needing extra care. It really opens that whole question of what is now the most important and appropriate approach to help.
Sara: It sounds incredibly comprehensive.
Lindy: I think that is what demarcates the Extra Lesson, in a certain way. Our assessment allows us to also see where it isn’t our modality. When a child comes for an Extra Lesson assessment, it doesn’t necessarily mean we will do Extra Lesson. It’s a very comprehensive assessment. The practitioner has to be able to interpret those results and arrive at what would be the best start. If Extra Lesson is going to be helpful for the child, the next part of the process is creating an individualised programme of support, intervention. We consider the tools of our trade that we might bring to help the child to re-capitulate, re-address, in an age appropriate way, the issues presenting. So the practitioner’s process is: assessment / diagnosis of assessment results, and then the best approach, ‘treatment’ for health, remediation to happen, including referrals if needed.
Lut: The Extra Lesson Programme itself happens in weekly one hour sessions, when a child comes and we do movement, art, all kinds of activities that help with that integration. The other part is the homework programme which is for about 10-15 minutes, with some movement games that they ideally do every day. And this is where a lot of the neurological reforming of pathways happens, in that daily repetition of certain activities in that certain developmental order.

extra lessson photo
Lindy: We’re in the business of supporting the maturing of movement patterns. Very young movement patterns are of a more automatic, ‘reactive’ nature, they’re more reflex bound. The pathway of development, progresses the movements system to a more ‘responsive’ state. Our movements start to reflect greater self-agency. We develop more ability in choosing what and how we act. We learn to hold back and adjust to stimuli. This maturation process relies on each of us being able to take hold of the structural body of bone, muscle and nerve. The skills involved in being able to manage ‘self’ are intricately linked to the maturation processes happening at this physical, neural level. Development follows an order where certain things have to happen before other more executive functions can happen. You have to have the right building blocks, the right foundational elements in a recapitulation process.

Is the neural/muscular structure of my eye free to serve my vision? Are my left and right hands still tethered to each other as is the case in little children? When my toes are picking up marbles do my hands also have to twinkle along with the movements or not? We can observe where the neurologically maturity is at and then support the way forward. Without the maturation of these pathways – difficulties will persist for our learning and also how we end up responding to life.

Lut: Left, right, below, above, in front and behind all imply a still central point from which we go out in those directions. It is to the left or right of the middle etc. If the middle is not a still reference point, with poor balance, then the directions in space are not reliable. If this isn’t secure in our 3 dimensional experience of our body and space, then it’s hard to make the abstraction onto 2 dimensional space with reading and writing on the flat page. So our physical maturation supports academic skills. Reading, writing and math are faculties that rest upon the development of taking hold of the body. And then reading becomes a faculty that one almost doesn’t need to teach, it becomes the next faculty that rests on the previous ones.
Sara: Do you think that’s what is unique about Extra Lesson and sets it apart from other programmes that might use movement?
Lut: For me one aspect that sets it apart is the weekly one-hour session, one on one, where we follow the child’s pace. The relationship between the practitioner and the child that is one of trust and absolute safety, where the child can feel – ‘I can breathe out, I can be myself,  I’m not judged.’ We try to make it fun, so out of that enthusiasm and engagement can also come change. But I think that the relationship of trust and creating a safe place which is the child’s place and where we follow their pace is the most important. We guide them along, but we’re not directing so much. I think that’s something that is very different from other approaches that can be more prescriptive.
Sara: I would describe it as child-centered.
Lindy: The relational aspect is critical. In Extra Lesson we are present to the process rather than the ‘product’. We work by clearly knowing what an ideal end goal might be, but we do not fix the end goal into an absolute. We cannot be sure about what a child’s neurology can manage. For example if a child unfortunately had oxygen deficiency at birth, there is no knowing how things will go and to what extent the child is able to respond to a programme. It’s in the relationship and in the warmth and safety – and the inner gesture of the practitioner: “you are just fabulous as you are…I know things are worrying you and that it’s hard at school…but let’s see if we can work on it together”, that things can change. The child’s sense of self in all of this is paramount, because at the end of the day it’s the self that is going to take hold of this challenge.

Through the relationship and the inner carrying of cases, new developments are sometimes observed e.g. a new sensitivity might show up. One might notice some anxiousness that wasn’t so apparent at the start. One might then see if some other, extra, support is needed for a while. This wish to weave and tuck things in as one accompanies the child, requires a sound relationship of trust. It’s a moving journey. It’s a living weaving.

I am thinking at the moment of a case where difficulties presented at birth relating to oxygen and stress.  When I met the child they were presenting with learning difficulties and difficulties with neural integration – seen in their huge struggle to learn to read, write, do math and cope with social interactions etc. My questions throughout had been around, “how much of what’s presenting here has a neural basis and how much might be possible if the over-sensitivities and anxiousness can be held with trust and warmth and acceptance of what is? How much might be set free when any one of us is met by someone who sincerely believes in us – who advocates without judgement or expectation and who just welcomes us?” Choices were made that gave this young person opportunity to work at their own comfortable pace. This young person went on later to become a kindergarten teacher . (And I have learned a lot from them.) We take on cases with a spiritual sense of  hope, and this inner feeling of if I steadfastly journey with you, what might we achieve?
Sara: How long did you work with that child?
Lindy: Two and a half to three years. Not constantly. Probably about 50 to 60 weeks of contact over three years.
Sigi: It is not a quick fix. It is usually at least a year that is the ideal time to work with a child. You would notice improvements after a few weeks of working. And then the changes that occur over the programme are lasting.
Lindy: You’re building it.
Lut: Like re-piling a house, working from the foundations up. What is then established is there for life.
Lindy: Joep Eikenboom, a Dutch teacher and Extra Lesson expert, answers the question of how you know whether a child has done sufficient Extra Lesson, and he said: “How you know is that the child is learning.” The child is learning in the classroom, learning to be a friend, learning to be with others, learning to cope with physical stimuli. It might not be full recovery, but they are healthily learning and coping in the world. They are in a process of going forward.
Sara: And in a process of life.
Lindy: Yes, they’re not stuck anymore.
Lut: There’s no guarantees. Life can throw up any trauma again, and then it might undermine those foundations. We’re not saying that won’t happen, but the skills that have been gained are on a level of structural change in the body, so that they are stronger to meet any future obstacles that may come their way.
Going back to that sense of safety and that relationship, the parents have to trust the process as well. Often when children come with learning difficulties, and as part of the homework, we ask the child, for example, to roll on the floor or to lie on the floor and lift their head or move like a salamander. For some parents it’s hard to trust that that is actually going to affect the learning. It’s important that we have clear communication for why we do what we do. In my practice, I also reassess every 10 or so weeks and give an update report to the parents. I communicate the changes I see and ask how things are going at school and at home. The more they understand the process the easier it is for them to trust it.
Sara: I’m also hearing there is a rhythm of a communication just like that there’s a rhythm of sessions.  There’s this rhythm of feedback and communication with parents.
Lut: Yes, ideally. I make it very clear that parents can email me or contact me with any questions any time. Because I believe it’s very important that they really understand and are really on board. The better that happens, that also effects the outcome of the process. If parents don’t quite get it, and aren’t quite on board, and don’t quite get the homework done, the outcome is also possibly less ideal than it could be.
Lindy: Sometimes those in the child’s environment may also need support. Perhaps a parents may need some support to cope with the developmental challenges of the child. Likewise teachers may need support in adapting the learning environment.

As Sigi said,  the programme tends to go for at least a year. Our work is physical. The rhythm of the physical body is a year. The physical rhythm is different to the rhythm of the emotional life, which is more like a week. Then the habit life is about a month.  Then how one thinks, from day to day, is a 24 hour rhythm. So the rhythm we work with in the Extra Lesson is this physical rhythm.
So what determines how long you’re going to be there are all those environments: the relational work, the time and energy that the parents can put in and the innate pace of the child.
Sara: Would you ever do a parallel Extra Lesson approach where you’re seeing both the child and the parent? So, you’re trying to shift the parents’ neurology as well.
A parent’s difficulties might not necessarily need The Extra Lesson but rather another form of support. There are however parents that say: “This is exactly how I was at school. Oh my gosh, that’s exactly what happened to me. I wish I’d had somebody to recognise this when I was a kid.” There can be this recognition of things in themselves, relating to what’s being said about their child. If it became fairly apparent though that the parent wished to also undertake Extra Lesson, they would ideally have their own process. What might be presenting for them could be quite different to the child and they would likely need a different pace.

Sara: I’m curious about what is the thinking behind Extra Lesson?
Sigi: Audrey McAllen is quoted as saying “The Extra Lesson Concept doesn’t focus on the soul of the child, but it works with the spiritual laws behind the architecture of the physical human body, and with the spirit of the earth. The exercises integrate the movements of the child into the universal movement patterns of the earth.”
Sara: What does that mean to connect somebody to the Earth?
The human being stands a bit like Tane pushing his Mum and Dad away. (editor’s note: this refers to the Maori creation legend.) You’ve got Ranginui (Sky Father) and Papatῡanuku (Earth Mother) and Tane (Man) standing out-stretched between them. This is the human picture between heaven and earth. And things from both Ranginui and Papatῡanuku inform Tane’s existence. He can’t be there without them. It’s really that picture unpacked neuro-scientifically as well as spiritually. We can’t do spiritual work unless we get to the earth. Here on earth we can work to overcome things in ourselves. And that’s what Audrey McAllen was eager to understand: how do those cosmic forces and earth forces actually inform the physical body. Audrey went on an enormous investigation and brought these incredible cosmic, esoteric ideas right down into living practice and into what children, practitioners, and teachers can do, that was Audrey’s genius.
Lut: It brings in the nature-nurture question as well. For every child, every one of us, everyone who has ever been born on the earth, child development follows the same pattern, and no one has ever needed to ‘teach’ a child to go through this development. Here we meet the archetype, the blueprint, the spiritual, the higher principles informing us all, whatever your language is to name this. It names that what is innately human and true for every human being on earth. Babies get to rolling through the movements they make, which are the same for every child all over the world. Like the baby’s babbling is the same in every language all over the world. If development (nature) is nurtured, then nature does its thing and the child reaches all the milestones in the right order. The right nurture needed around a child, is for the adults to be upright human beings, so that the child can imitate them, mirror what they do and who they are, and, most importantly, not to hurry this development along. Although the milestones are the same for all of us, each and every-one of us did it in our own time and pace. Some walked at 10 months, others at 17, and both are fine.
I do talk with the parents about embodiment, the Self needs to take hold of the body and it does that from the head down. The first thing the little baby gets control over is the head, then the neck, and then the shoulders, arms, and then the hips, down to the feet. So we embody, the Self comes home in the body, from the head down. If that hasn’t fully happened everywhere smoothly, and I’m not quite into my hands and my feet, I’m not sure where they are – I cannot have that innate knowing of where I am in space.  The picture I often use with parents is the rider on the horse, with the Self being the child, and his body the horse. If I’m not fully embodied, it’s like the horse taking the child for a ride pretty much all the time (through retained reflexes, midlines, poor balance etc. that cause involuntary movements), and it’s very hard work to keep that horse under control, to make it do what you would like it to do, or what it needs to do, all day long. Children are often very tired at the end of a day working hard to keep their body in check. With full embodiment, the rider and the horse become one. Then they’re off and no longer held back by this horse that was trying to do its own thing.
Lindy: And have the freedom to choose – self-agency.

Lut:  In that bigger picture, Extra Lesson is helping children make that connection to that three-dimensional body and this earth existence. It’s also reconnecting them with nature, that we are part of nature. The whole virtual reality brings a disconnection from the three-dimensional reality.

Lindy: Screen is two dimensional.  When the child is very young they’re trying to make their body their own  –  to make the rider (themselves) and the horse (their body) become one wonderful unit. Using Lut’s analogy, if the horse never gets any work, never meets left/right, up/down, above/below – is held back from galloping here or going backwards there, or doesn’t experience pulling hard up a hill, or picking it’s way down a hill…, if there is minimal movement happening in the body, proper integration of space doesn’t sufficiently occur. Movement alone allows neural pathways to develop. The horse has to know where it begins and ends, where its tail is and where its mouth is. When a child has good spatial awareness and body geography, things like how to perfectly achieve a fabulous jump or know exactly where a particular sound is coming from, becomes effortless, skills can build and be instantly on call.

All that interpretation through the sensory world, needs the three dimensional spatial awareness to be there. Two dimensional space doesn’t give the third dimension. When children spend lots of time in front of screens they are living in 2D space and development is about attaining good fluency in 3-D space. The 3-D essence of being human, requires lots of 3-D ‘nutrition’ i.e. movement in nature where self and body can be one.
Lut: Too much screen time would be one example of where nurture is then not allowing nature to do what it needs to do.
Lindy:  It’s not of course conscious…or purposefully done. There is often a lack of information and understanding about what ‘nurtures’ human development.
Lut: We sometimes have lost the understanding, the intuitive knowing of healthy development and therefore the parenting to support this.
Lindy: What they see on the screen is a whole bunch of binary codes that give the illusion of a colour, an illusion of movement, an illusion of forms jumping around. It looks like the rabbit is chasing another rabbit, but it’s just binary combinations. The colour that arises from those particular combinations is not true colour. The first seven years of life, the first ten years, that is the time for nurturing choices for the child and to not over-screen them, but have real sensory experiences. More importantly, I say this very strongly, it is not authentic. You are not putting a truth in front of the child. In the nurturing environment, the child sits in front of a non-truth. It’s not the true colour, it’s not the true sound or movement, it’s not even the true form. It’s pixellated. It’s very clever when you think about it. It’s incredible, it’s amazing. I saw the other day that someone had given their tiny child an iPhone, with some little picture running around on the screen. The child went dead still and was totally quiet. Instead of embodying the movement and being the movement, and being the colour and the sound, it’s externalised and the child watches it. When the parent took the phone away, the child immediately started moving again.
Sara: Is that part of the extra lesson session or curriculum? Learning to play? Learning to move?
We move in a playful way in our sessions. All the special exercises, like the copper ball and 3 fold spiral, that we only find in the Extra Lesson Programme, are working on the subconscious, where the body geography and spatial awareness live. And rhythm again comes up as important here.
Sara: Are there special tools or toys you use?
Sigi: We use the copper ball and copper rod, beanbags for exercises with the rhythm and spatial awareness. We also use big Swiss balls, balance boards and balance beam etc.
Lut: When we then do these games, they have sitting behind it that understanding. We are, as practitioners, aware of what sits behind those exercises. We don’t correct the child, we allow the child to come to integration through repetition of the movements. The child then consolidates it, their nature has then made that developmental step.
I think it is important to note that some exercises we do correct, we do want them to do it in the right way. But others we don’t, then we allow, by doing them over and over again, the child to overcome earlier stages of development and make the next step, in their own time and pace.
Lindy: To support that, as was said before, development happens from the head down, one lifts the head up first before gaining control over the shoulders etc. There is also another developmental archetypal stream happening at the same time which goes the other way. In Extra Lesson we are recapitulating how we grow from the ground up. The child goes from lying down on the floor, to rolling, to lifting the shoulders, to getting onto hands and knees, to rocking forward and backwards, to crawling, to sitting and finally to standing up. This moving, this urge to move and reach those milestones in development is directed by the will and this is totally unconscious. The movements the baby makes are unconscious, they just happen. The natural state of childhood is to move, to integrate space, to ‘realise’ the schema of the body etc. It is an innate process, and the nurture, (i.e. what is around the child) will allow the innate to happen more fluently if it is appropriate to what is truly supportive of that stage of human development.
Sara: What are some of the outcomes you might expect from the Extra Lesson Programme? We mentioned it is about the process and not outcome focused, but what can we expect to see?
Lut: One of the first things we often see is that children start to have self confidence again. After a while their confidence strengthens so that they will often start to challenge themselves where they were hesitant before. For whatever reason a child comes, that is something that happens for almost all of them. They start to enjoy the challenges.
Sigi: They are starting to see their own potential.
Sara: I find that very touching, the idea that the confidence and potential are the things that you see, because isn’t that everything? The reading, writing and math is then a bonus almost.
Lut: Some feedback I have had from parents is: ‘his reading has suddenly picked up.’ Or a boy who was always held back from little outings the class made to a park in the area because he couldn’t handle those moments, that he was now allowed to join in those outings and that he was managing to sit still, be focused and silently read for half an hour in the classroom.
Sigi: Making the child feel that life is not a struggle anymore. There are still challenges, I still have to learn, but I can give it a go. Being resilient.
Lut: So they can unfold their gifts. We hear often: dyslexia can bring with it gifts. But it is only a gift if I can give my gifts to the world. If that dyslexia or other limitation is holding me back, then it is a burden, then it isn’t a gift for this child. Extra Lesson is not going to take the dyslexia away, but it will help myself to be present in my body, that I can be in the here and now, then I can use the gifts that dyslexia might bring me. I can use them, be creative with them rather than it being a burden on me that stop me from my development.
Lindy: Another outcome may be that the sensory overwhelm lessens, the tolerance for sensory impressions rises. So that the reactions to sensory stimuli becomes less atypical and more typical, less reactive. For example a child brushes my arm when walking past, before I would have felt it so strongly that I though they hit me, it was painful, now I can see that they just touched me while walking past. Another example may be that a child that never got invited to birthday parties now is able to go to them and it is a positive experience for everyone. Or a mum of a 10 year old asking after 3 weeks what we had been doing, because now her son had made her a cup of tea, had organised his own breakfast and had put all the things in his schoolbag for the day for the first time.
Lut: Other feedback has been about a 13 year old girl, diagnosed with dyslexia and reading at the level of an 8.5 year old when we started, a bit more than a year later she was reading at her age level.
Sigi: It ranges from the academic improvements, to social, sensory, confidence, organisational: what day is it, where are my things…
Lindy: changes in sequencing in time: it is Tuesday, that means I have gym and I need these things in my schoolbag. That is an example of awareness of time and space that has kicked in.
Lut: Being able to be in the here and now. The here being space, the now being time. And from there I can relate to nature, to the world, to other people. But in order to do that, I need to be in the here and now.
Lindy: And that means embodiment. Because the here and now are physical states, are earth bound states. Children who tend to be ‘more out of body’ may have amazing ideas, but find it hard to make them happen in reality.
Sara: This could be true for some adults too.
Lut: Yes, we become adults like that if we don’t integrate things as a child. I am now working with a 54 year old woman who only a few years ago found out that what she saw and heard is not what other people hear and sea, and got a diagnosis of visual and auditory processing disorder. She spent all her life coping. And we all have to some degree coping mechanisms. None of us are fully integrated. But a coping mechanism that means I struggle with parallel parking, I can live with. But if my coping mechanisms mean I can only do certain jobs, or work for a limited amount of hours per day, if I can’t be in a group of more that 5 people before it gets too much etc. Then the burden may be too heavy and holding me back, and we can help and lighten that burden so that I become a bit more free and have more choices that I didn’t have before.

Lindy: That brings us back to the original question of who can benefit from Extra Lesson, all ages really.

Sara: And why is it important to have Extra Lesson Practitioners available through schools?
Lindy: I think when learning or the sensory environment is tricky for a child, having the opportunity for the child to deal with things in the environment where they are experiencing the difficulty, makes it part and parcel of the child’s day. It’s already a big day for a child to ‘manage and digest’, from 9 am to 3pm. In a way, for children who struggle to cope with that big day the Extra Lesson session on site, provides a time out from the busy intensity of the classroom or playground. And it allows that we now take steps ‘towards recovery’ within the learning/school environment. An Extra Lesson session is thereby tucked into the child’s mahi (work) for that day. The other aspect is that the teacher can also be part of things e.g. shared pictures between with the Extra Lesson practitioner and the teachers can hopefully support the child’s learning needs. Collaborative conversations can also support the Extra Lesson practitioner to gain insights in where to adjust the Extra Lesson sessions. Extra Lesson, if you like, becomes itself more integrated, – and it is after all, a body of work that is all about an integrative approach.
Sara: The integrative lesson.
Lindy:  Yes, maybe not the Extra Lesson, but it could be called The Integrative Lesson.
Lut: I like the sound of that. For me, being in a private practice, my relationship is more with the parents. It’s the parents that take the initiative to come and take on that task of supporting their child through this programme, and they have the possibility and freedom to share that with the teachers of the school that the child is going to. I can also see children from many different schools in the area, and am not limited to one school. My focus is on helping the parent to understand their child’s difficulties and what we can offer. The parent then also oversees the homework aspect of the programme.
Sigi: I was going to say that possibly a disadvantage of being at the school is the link between the parent and the practitioner may be not so strong, which is needed for the homework part of the Extra Lesson.
Lindy: Yes, definitely. Ideally a triangle is there: the interest and support from home / the child’s learning environment carried by teachers / and the Extra Lesson Practitioner’s support. There’s a strong, valuable, parent-caregiver aspect that informs the school and practitioner what’s happening for this child’s learning and behaviour in the wider world.
The Extra Lesson approach arose out of the pedagogical question: “How can the teacher meet (best meet) the child?” Since then the work has morphed, transformed, and evolved to encompass that, children with developmental needs are better served one on one – and not only within the classroom environment. You can do some of this work in a classroom, but the real nitty-gritty changes, that are really individual, tend to take place in the safety of a space where the child knows that nobody’s watching, and they just do this at their own pace. This is a critical part of the programme. It’s undertaken each child’s pace and not at the pace of the class.
Sara: So what does it take to become an Extra Lesson Practitioner?
Lindy: It’s a question that usually leads one to find this approach. We often start with the question, that comes out of our own personal experience or professional experience: Why do some children struggle with learning; or what sits behind my child’s struggle? A deeper question about development arises.
Extra Lesson involves a post graduate level of training, so people will usually have an academic background, i.e. in teaching, occupational therapy, psychology etc. To do this work well, requires a lot of ongoing reading and researching – both during  the training as well as in the profession itself. No two people are ever the same so the research aspect with regards to each child’s question, stays there all along.
Sara: How long does it take to become an extra lesson practitioner?
Lindy: It is a three year training, consisting of 6 x 5 day workshops. So there is a workshop (intensive) every 6 months. The workshops consist of lectures, discussions, practical exercises, therapy paintings, case-studies etc. The course modules are covered across all 6 workshops, building and deepening the understanding as you go along. At the end of each workshop, there are written and practical assignments be undertaken and submitted. There are online opportunities between workshop intensives, where course participants can clarify / discuss aspects of the training etc. The trainers are available on email throughout to support participants in this journey.

Sara: Thank you all for this illuminating conversation. I feel I have a clear picture of the Extra Lesson now, and how it can create significant, positive shifts for a child’s developmental trajectory. Thank you for the excellent work you do locally and internationally. It has been a pleasure speaking with you and learning about this vital work.