Presentation on theme: "Teaching the Indigo Child: New Teaching Methods for New Generations Anna M. Pietrolonardo."— Presentation transcript:
Teaching the Indigo Child: New Teaching Methods for New Generations Anna M. Pietrolonardo
These kids are different. Most say these words at some point in their work. Over many generations, especially in the 20th century, we have labeled each succeeding generation with its own name, stereotypical likes and dislikes, music, clothing, poetic voices, political leaders, etc.
Generational Labels These labels have been justified, romanticized and eulogized by members of each generation. At the same time, psychologists and pedagogues have analyzed and classified the behavior of young people in an attempt to understand and influence it in a positive way.
The Youngest Generation These children are old souls in young bodies. They are intuitive, right brain dominant and self-aware They are also hyperactive. Parents, teachers and day-care workers have struggled with behavioral challenges that do not respond to time- tested methods.
Doreen Virtue, Ph.D An overwhelming propensity to solve the issue [is toward] legally drugging the child. Lee Carroll and Jan Tober, The Indigo Children. (Carlsbad, CA: Hay House, Inc., 1999) xiii.
Particularly since the early 1980s, an increasing number of children have been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Disorder [ADD] or Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder [ADHD]. Although there are a few clinicians who advocate non-pharmaceutical interventions to help these children, the standard approach to the treatment of ADD and ADHD has been medication with suppressive drugs such as Ritalin.
The Indigo Children Among the researchers seeking non- pharmaceutical answers for these children is a group that has postulated a theory about an emerging generation of young people with altered DNA strands and unique qualities. These special children are called the Indigo children. Most have been born since Their name comes from the bright color of their energetic auras.
Gordon-Michael Scallion Futurist Gordon-Michael Scallion spoke of their planetary entrance in the late 20 th century and labeled them the Blue Children.
Nancy Ann Tappe Nancy Ann Tappe, who has the gift of seeing auric fieldselectromagnetic fields with distinct colors and frequencies, as if through a Kirlian camera, simply calls them Indigos. [i] Rick Martin, The New Kids Have Arrived! The Indigo Children: An Interview with Co-Author Jan Tober, The Spectrum Newspaper [i] In her Ph.D. research, Tappe discovered that from 1980 on, there was an additional auric color associated with some newborn babies. And, since 1995, the percentage has been increasing steadily. [ii] Nancy Ann Tappe, Understanding Your Life Through Color. (Carlsbad, CA: Hay House, Inc., 1982) 7. [ii]
Lee Carroll and Jan Tober Lee Carroll and Jan Tober are well-known researchers and authors of The Indigo Children: The New Kids Have Arrived. Their book explores the subject of the Indigo children and offers valuable insights to clinicians, parents and educators who work with children who are challenging behaviorally or who have been diagnosed with ADD or ADHD.
Doreen Virtue, PhD, & Jan Tober Doreen Virtue, PhD, and Jan Tober collaborated on The Care and Feeding of Indigo Children.
Wendy Chapman Wendy Chapman has published many articles specifically for educators and parents who are trying to find more effective ways to nurture the sensitive, creative minds and spirits of these children.
Articles and Web Sites There are many articles and web sites, including: The Indigo Children Website, Metagifted Organization, and others.
Harbingers of a New Era The common thread in all of this research is the recognition of the uniqueness of these children, both physically and emotionally, and of their importance as harbingers of a new era of acting intuitively, speaking honestly and living in harmony.
Special Needs of Indigo Students This paper examines the unique characteristics of The Indigo Children as students, and evaluates methods of teaching and disciplining children in light of their special needs as students. For parents and teachers to help these children maximize their potential, it is necessary to reevaluate commonly practiced techniques for disciplining and teaching young people.
Challenges and Potential Indigo Children have unique qualities that make them especially fit for the challenges of the emerging generations. If their special gifts are not developed, even worse, if they are stifled by archaic standards of discipline and education, then these Indigo Children may not be able to use their talents to lead our civilization forward.
Indigo is the Auric Color The Indigo Children were so named because of the deep purple color of their aura. Indigo is the auric color that corresponds to the highest-speed energy frequency and the most spiritual chakra, also called the third eye in energy work. [i] Doreen Virtue, Ph.D., The Care and Feeding of Indigo Children (Carlsbad, CA: Hay House, Inc., 2001) 10. [i]
Kirlian Photography Kirlian photography is a way of representing the energy of the of the body in visual form. Since discovered by inventors Semyon and Valentina Kirlian in 1939, the technique has been researched and refined by independent labs and health practitioners throughout the globe.
Tappe describes four categories of Indigos: Each with its own special purpose:
1.Humanist These Indigos will work with and for the masses in service professions such as physician, attorney, customer support, etc. They are hyperactive, social, hold very strong opinions, read voraciously and are easily distracted.
2.Conceptual These Indigos are more interested in projects than people. They are agile, athletic, have parental control issues, and a strong tendency toward addiction especially to drugs. They are the future engineers, architects, and designers.
3.Artist These Indigos are sensitive, sometimes small-framed and highly creative. Between ages four and ten they sample many creative pursuits; as teens they focus on a special artistic pursuit. They will be tomorrows teachers and artists.
4. Inter-dimensional These Indigos are large-framed. Their favorite expressions are I know; Leave me alone. They can be bullies and have trouble fitting into groups. They will bring in new philosophy and religion. [i] Carroll and Tober, [i]
Indigo Abilities The Indigos have highly developed right-brain abilities, which are apparent from an early age. They have a keen thirst for knowledge, especially in subjects of their own choosing.
Common patterns of behavior in the Indigo Children : 1. They come into the world with a feeling of royalty (and often act like it). 2. They have a feeling of deserving to be here, and are surprised when others dont share that. 3. Self-worth is not a big issue. They often tell the parents who they are. 4. They have difficulty with absolute authority (authority without explanation or choice). 5. They simply will not do certain things; for example waiting in line is difficult for them.
Common patterns of behavior in the Indigo Children : 6. They get frustrated with systems that are ritual oriented and dont require creative thought. 7. They often see better ways of doing things, both at home and in school, which makes them seem like system busters (non-conforming to any system). 8. They seem antisocial unless theyre with their own kind. If there are no others of like consciousness around them, they often turn inward, feeling like no other human being understands them. School is often extremely difficult for them socially.
Common patterns of behavior in the Indigo Children : 9. They will not respond to guilt discipline (Wait until your father gets home.) 10. They arent shy about letting you know what they need. [i][i] Virtue, xi-xii.
Holy or Evil? Traditionally, behaviors have been described as values along a scale of holy and evil. With the Indigos, the two poles are integrated. Instead of the holiest, there are average people acting holy; instead of the evil ones, there are average people doing evil deeds. It is chilling to note that every young killer of schoolmates or parents have been Indigos. [i][i] Nancy Ann Tappe, Introduction to the Indigos. The Indigo Children, 9.
Indigos are rewriting the rules of survival. They are not afraid. They know who they are. But, they are still children. And they require adult guidance and nurturing to bring forth their positive attributes.
Indigo Mission and Path Indigos are born with a clear mission, but their path can become blocked in their life experience. Some Indigos quit and give up their mission, losing interest in life. Others try to get rid of whatever or whomever they see as the blockage. [i] Nancy Ann Tappe, Introduction to the Indigos. The Indigo Children, 9. [i]
Indigo Challenge for Teachers For teachers, with class size of up to twenty- five students, having several Indigos in class creates a tremendous challenge. Attention spans are short, the need to move about creates distractions, and students challenge instructions or simply refuse to participate-- even in collaborative activities.
Discipline Threats of detention as a consequence of inappropriate, disruptive behavior are often met with open contempt for the teacher, the school and authority in general. Time outs may calm the momentary disruption, but private dialogues are necessary to resolve the issues that bring forth inappropriate behavior.
Opening Up Getting to know an Indigo is not always easy, as they are not willing to open up to people who they sense are not like them.
Conformity The left-brain oriented, linear environment of contemporary public education rewards the Indigos for suppressing their own natural gifts of creativity in order to conform to the rules and regulations. Sitting through a lecture, demonstration or instructions prior to an activity is very difficult for them.
Distractions They have urges to get up and walk around, constantly distracting other students. Even in cooperative learning, the current trend in instructional delivery, Indigos are expected to follow procedures and stay on specified tasks within their groups. They only stay on task when they want to do so because the subject has engaged them.
Button-pushers Indigos appreciate being treated with respect and dislike manipulation. They are adept at psychological button pushing and are often labeled as non-conformists. [i][i] Debra Hegerle, Indigo Children, InnerSelf Magazine..http://www.InnerSelf.com September November 2002, 2.
Behavior In fact, their highly developed intuitive skills allow them to sense attempts at manipulation and turn the agenda back on the perpetrator. Adults might consider their behavior rude, yet the Indigo children feel perfectly justified in challenging any adult whom they sense is hiding the agenda from them
Debra Hegerle calls them good button pushers : They're working with us adults to help us recognize where we are holding and using old, subtle patterns to manipulate them, which used to work but will no longer.
Debra Hegerle calls them good button pushers :. So if you are constantly getting resistance from an Indigo, check yourself first. They may be holding up a mirror for you, or be asking you, in a nonconformist way, for help in finding new boundaries, fine-tuning their own skills or talents, or going to the next level of growth. [i] Hegerle, 2. [i]
Healing Powers Indigos use their innate healing powers which instinctively. They form small groups, positioning themselves where they feel needed especially to aid another child who is ill or upset. On an energetic level, they blend their own energy fields with that of the child in need in order to bring balance.
Healing Triangles Hegerle observed that they often sit in triangles or diamond-shaped patterns to do this briefly; then, when finished, they disperse and go off to other activities. [ i] Hegerle, 2.[ i]
Classroom Dynamics In the classroom, Indigos will sense when another student is in distress. They instinctively go to their aid. If permission is required to check up on a friend who has used a pass to go out of the classroom, Indigos will often sacrifice their own limited passes to follow up on their friends in need.
Nurture the Gifts A wise teacher would nurture this healing gift in the Indigos to further group collaboration and cohesiveness in the classroom. Indigos work best when they are sincerely interestedin the topic and in their team members.
ADD or ADHD Many Indigos are diagnosed as having ADD or ADHD, and are medicated with suppressive drugs. This is neither to suggest that all children with ADD or ADHD are Indigos, nor that all Indigos have ADD or ADHD. But, clearly, new methods for teaching and disciplining these children are required.
A New Acronym Psychologist Doreen Virtue has suggested that the acronym ADHD be reformulated for Indigo Children as Attention Dialed into a Higher Dimension [ii] Virtue, 2.[ii]
Alternative Therapies With this perspective, perhaps clinicians and educators would not be so quick to consider depressant drugs as the solution for hyperactivity.
Alternative Therapies Alternative methods for disciplining and educating these children include environmental detoxification, balanced nutrition, adequate rest, methods to encourage translation of right-brain creative images into communicative words, consistency in setting boundaries which protect the child without stifling growth, multi-sensory lesson presentation, collaborative learning, and alternative schooling methods.
Indigos perform best in serene, uncluttered environments. Classrooms that are cluttered with brightly colored signs and posters distract students from assigned tasks. Adequate air circulation, comfortable temperature, and pollutant-free, toxin-free buildings are essential in providing a safe environment for learning. Seating position relative to other members of the group or class can also make a big difference in the classroom performance of Indigos.
Balanced Nutrition and Adequate Rest Balanced nutrition and adequate rest are of tremendous importance for all students, but especially for Indigos who are sensitive to toxins and chemical imbalances. A diet based on balanced portions from the food pyramid, with more fruits and vegetables and fewer sweets and highly processed foods helps Indigos balance blood sugar levels and stabilizes activity levels throughout the day. [i] Virtue, 145. [i] All students need adequate rest; few get it.
Nutrition and Sleep Many students come to school without breakfast or enough sleep; they start their day tired and grouchy. Before lunch, they are so hungry they cannot concentrate; they have headaches. For lunch, they often load up on highly processed foods full of sugar. They start the afternoon on a sugar high, hyperactive and unable to concentrate; Then, they crash mid afternoon.
Nutrition and Rest Again, they feel tired, cannot concentrate, and have headaches. Often, these students rest during late classes to conserve energy for sports and other extra-curricular activities after school.
Indigos are able to focus on a lesson that truly interests them. When they are hungry, tired, bored or otherwise distracted, they cannot pay attention. Finding methods to encourage translation of right-brain creative images into communicative words is an effective way of engaging Indigos in the quest for knowledge. The Indigos search for new boundaries is very important.
Safe Environment for Learning For them, a safe environment for learning is one where it is okay to do things differently, where they have a comfortable personal space in which to work.
Active Participation Active participation lessons allow students to express themselves and participate creatively in the classroom. For example, students draw and color images that represent the lesson; then, they explain the drawing in their own words to other group members or to the class.
Indigos Thrive on These Activities Lesson plans which incorporate multi- sensory learning skills, a variety of activities, opportunities to get up and move around, web search activity, group work and independent study help Indigos maintain interest for brief segments of time.
The Teachers Role The teachers role in all of this is as the strategic planner of appropriate, varied, interesting lessons, and as the coach who guides the students through their learning activities. In a classroom full of students, each with their own needs and interests, this is a major challenge.
The Teachers Role The teacher provides format and structure, but not to stifle creativity. Instead, the teacher provides structures that support the students self-discovery process.
The Teachers Role While it is true that Indigos are right-brain dominant and need a safe environment for creative expression of their gifts, a classroom without boundaries could be chaotic. A teacher needs to establish procedures and rules, which provide consistency in the activities of the classroom. The teacher is responsible for setting boundaries, which protect the child without stifling growth.
Rules and Procedures A few sensible rules and procedures for the basic activities of the class help Indigos feel comfortable in the classroom, especially if they collaborate in deciding what the rules and procedures will be. In the public school setting, these are methods that concerned teachers could employ in their classrooms to help Indigos and other students establish a community of learners.
Alternate Schooling Systems Because the Indigo children do not respond well to linear left-brain oriented educational methods that have been widely used over the past century, many researchers suggest alternate schooling systems. In Teaching the Children, Jennifer Palmer defines alternate as an alternative choice from existing systems that are in-place but failing to see the changing needs of the new children. [i] Jennifer Palmer, Teaching the Children. The Indigo Children. 95. [i]
Alternate Schooling Systems Some of the educational alternatives that meet the needs of these children are Montessori Schools, which feature children as independent learners; [ii] Palmer, 96.[ii] Waldorf Schools, where students work in an unstructured atmosphere devoid of exams, grades, computers or televisions; [iii][iii] Association of Waldorf Schools of North America. 12 November 2002.http://www.waldorfschools.com
Alternate Schooling Systems Home Schooling, especially for families of modest financial means, and unschooling which is based on Aristotles concept that the child learns best when allowed to think freely and arrive at his or her own conclusions. [iv][iv] Anne Sullivan, 12 November 2002.http://www.unschooling.com Indigos prefer to work out their own solutions, seeking help only if its presented to them with respect and within a format that offers them choices. If they sense a hidden agenda or attempts at manipulation, they resist.
The main attributes of alternate education are these: 1. The students are honored, not the system. 2. The students have choices about how and at what pace the lessons are presented. 3. The curriculum is flexible and is adapted to individual needs of learners. 4. The children and teachers set the learning standard, not the system.
The main attributes of alternate education are these: 5. Teachers have great autonomy within their student groups. 6. New educational ideas are welcomed. 7. Testsif given at all, evolve with student awareness, and methods of assessment change. 8. Dynamic change is the norm. 9. Its probably controversial. [v] Palmer, [v]
The main attributes of alternate education are these: Students in these school settings are free to do whatever activity intrigues them, moving from one project to another as the muse inspires them. Teachers provide guidance and have considerable freedom to develop the curriculum around the needs and interests of individual students.
The main attributes of alternate education are these: Assessments are not used at all in most of these settings. This is in sharp contrast to the assessment-oriented learning standards and performance descriptors that are currently mandated by state boards of education for public school students throughout the United States. For families who can afford the higher expense of alternative, private schooling, these environments are well suited to Indigo Children.
Summary The Indigo children have arrived. They are special. They require assistance from us in order to take their rightful place in society. The educational system must change in order to help them reach their potential. There must be options available to students. They must be treated with respect and allowed to negotiate their position.
Conclusions Contemporary educators must adapt their methods to help the Indigo Children within the school system. Teachers need to manage classroom behavior without stifling intuitive talent and creativity, and without appearing to be manipulative. Clinicians must evaluate alternatives to Ritalin and other drugs prescribed for children diagnosed with ADD or ADHD.
Conclusions Adults are charged with the responsibility of helping the Indigo children come forth to lead our society into an era of greater harmony. The Indigo Children are coming forth in great numbers. They are born with gifts that can be nurtured and developed or stifled and destroyed by us, the adults, parents, educators, clinicians.
The Indigo Child: New Teaching Methods for a New Generation Copyright 2002, Anna Marie Pietrolonardo, N.D., N.C.T.M.B. All rights reserved. Reproduction of this material by any means without prior permission of the author is expressly prohibited.