My 13-year-old son Jonathan is a solid B student with no learning or behavioral issues. He has a September birthday, and I chose not to hold him back a year, so is much younger than most of his classmates.
I decided to send him to classes at the Empowered Learning Transformation Center to help prepare him for the rigors of high school. As all DMV parents know, this is a competitive area, so I do often feel pressure that his B’s should be A’s. More important than his grades for me though, is his quality of life. He struggles at times with his homework load, and it can often take him hours, so even being able to complete his work more quickly would be a big plus. That extra homework time could be spent doing something he loves, or just relaxing after a stressful day.
I chose Empowered Learning because they don’t just focus on traditional tutoring methods. They work on body/mind integration, and I was intrigued by their approach to fuse educational and medical technology to “rewire” the brain for learning. The centers have a 20-year track record, and their success stories were impressive. It sounded like a good fit for my son, and their new Bethesda, MD, location was convenient for me by metro.
At our first session, we met with the Center’s co-founder Peter Riddle. Peter did a thorough physical exam with Jonathan, testing his balance, coordination, eye focus and attention. He also did a series of cognitive tests. Jonathan was engaged and interested throughout the entire process.
After the physical and cognitive testing, Peter showed Jonathan a 29-letter word and tested his memory spelling it. Of course, my son’s reaction was, “No way can I remember that!” Peter worked with Jonathan on a series of exercises breaking down the word into smaller chunks. By the end of the session, not only could my son spell the entire word by memory, he could do it forward and backward. It really was incredible. I could see Jonathan’s sense of accomplishment right before my eyes!
Even though our session lasted an hour and a half, it wasn’t boring or tedious, and Peter kept Jonathan’s attention and had excellent rapport with him. I was sent a complete testing report, and as a parent, found it really informative. The biggest indicator of success, though? Jonathan is jazzed about his bi-weekly sessions. There’s nothing worse than having to drag your complaining child to an appointment, so I was relieved and excited that our introductory meeting went so well.
Empowered Learning Transformation Centers
8120 Woodmont Avenue, Suite 150
Meet the Reviewer!
Nancy S. is a northern VA mom to son Jonathan, age 13. Like many DMV parents, she works full time and strives to find balance in her work and home life. She will be writing a series of reviews about her son’s experiences at the Empowered Learning Transformation Center, so check back to follow his progress.