MEET THE DENNISONS
In the late 1960s, a Southern California public school reading specialist began to realize the interconnection of sensorimotor abilities, language acquisition, and academic achievement. In exploring the use of movement to enhance academic skills, he founded a group of reading centers where, based on his own empirical research along with study in such fields as psychology, neuroscience, and developmental optometry, he adapted specific movements to his students’ needs.
By the early 1980s, Dr. Paul E. Dennison and his wife and collaborator, Gail E. Dennison, had created Educational Kinesiology (Edu-K)-enhanced learning through movement. The Dennisons’ visionary insight led them to develop the unique learning-readiness program known as Brain Gym®, which offers the introductory elements of the Edu-K work: the 26 core Brain Gym® activities (often called just “the 26”). Today, people of all ages use these simple, powerful activities to enhance their visual, auditory, and kinesthetic skills for easier and more pleasurable learning.
The 26, along with a wealth of techniques for movement-based learning, are offered in a variety of settings that include schools, corporations, elder facilities, and athletic training programs. The Dennisons’ contributions to the field of educational science are far-reaching, and have benefited the lives of learners in more than 90 countries.
In 1987 Paul and Gail Dennison founded the Educational Kinesiology Foundation, d.b.a. Brain Gym® International, a nonprofit public-benefit corporation established to provide access to learning theory, experiential training, and instructor licensure (see braingym.org for a listing of courses and instructors).
The Dennisons teach internationally, and are coauthors of a series of books and manuals on movement-based learning. Gail is the originator of the Double Doodle Play and Movement Dynamics courses as well as the Visioncircles program for natural-vision improvement. In Paul’s autobiographical Brain Gym® and Me: Reclaiming the Pleasure of Learning, he offers a background and synthesis of Edu-K thinking.