Date of Award

6-2005

Degree Name

Master of Science

Department

Occupational Therapy

First Advisor

Dr. Ben J. Atchison

Second Advisor

Dr. Cindee Quake-Rapp

Third Advisor

Dr. Paula W. Jamison

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access

Abstract

Objective: The purpose of this quantitative study was to determine the effects of Brain Gym® activities on second-grand students' academic performance and handwriting skills.

Method: Results were obtained by administering the Test of Handwriting Skills (THS) to two classrooms in a Northern Michigan Elementary School and having both teachers complete a self-developed Academic Performance Form on each student participating in the study. The data from was analyzed using a t-test for the THS and mean scores for the self-developed Academic Performance Form.

Results: Findings suggest a significant difference (p < .05) in the number of letters produced in 20 seconds and spacing of letters. Non-standardized testing showed a decrease in attention to task scores between pre- and post-testing.

Conclusion: Brain Gym® activities were shown to positively effect handwriting skills. These findings support the research of Drabben-Thiemann and Donczik. Findings also suggest that there is no significant difference in academic performance following Brain Gym® activities. Further research on the effects of Brain Gym® activities in the school environment is recommended.

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