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Igraj se za mano is a festival organized by The Special Education Centre Janez Levec Ljubljana and Association of inclusive culture. This year in Ljubljana the main events took place at Kongresni trg and lasted for four days, from May 23 to 26. The idea of the festival is to build connections between children and adolescents with special needs and everyone else who would like to join the activities regardless age, nationality and abilities.


Me and Lorena, we joined the Festival in a group of other EVS volunteers. We were mostly involved in organizing and leading different morning activities like collage-making, painting, drawing removable tattoos, making postcards, badges, origami.. Time passed fast and it seems like we, the volunteers, enjoyed the process not any less than the kids who came to take part in the activities. The team was great, many friends of ours were there and of course me made new acquaintances.

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Here we go...This is a short article about the last sessions of Možganska Gimnastika. The first session was on 5th of May, and from there we will have it every Wednesday at 10.00, in the Dom upokojencev Brežice. Just come and join us!

What is Možganska Gimnastika and for what can we use it?

The creator of this technique is Dr. Paul Dennison, clinical psychologist, who called it Brain Gym, and is the result of many studies in applied neuroscience and difficulties in learning. In the begining, it was created to help mostly children and adults with some kind of learning problems, like dyspraxia, ADHD, attention deficit, dyslexia, etc.  but after observing these great results, they started to use it to help all the range of age, and any kind of problems, and even with people without problems, just to help to obtain our greatest potential and obtain a better quality of life.  Možganska gimnastika is a set of coordinated and combined exercises  that  create new neuronal pathways thus experiencing new response patterns as neuronal communication is obtained faster and more naturally.

Brain Gym

This excersices can help us in many ways: Concentration and focalization, coordination and balance, strengthen learning skills and processes, improve memory and level of understanding, brain - manual coordination. With this exercises we work  Laterality (It is the ability to coordinate both cerebral hemispheres, especially in the middle field, needed for reading, writing and communicating), Concentration (ability to coordinate the upper and lower brain areas. This ability is related to emotions) and Focus (ability to coordinate the frontal and posterior lobes of the brain,and is related to participation and understanding). The exercises of možganska gimnastika facilitate brain integration in these three dimensions, and provoking or unblocking different neural connections.

We implement the Možganska Gimnastika in the Elderly Home, including in the program Večgeneracijski center Posavje. We introduced briefly a description of what is and for what is Brain Gym. Then we started the session with a warming up game. We seated in circle, holding our hands and concentrating in silence. I sent a series of 'pulsations' in both directions around the group discreetly squeezing the hands of those next me. The participants passed these pulsations through the circle, as if it were an electric current, squeezing the person's hand next to them and literally 'energizing' the group. After that we started with the first set of exercises, always with the priceless help of Mihaela and Katja in the translation into Slovenian language J

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The last week finished with the Russian Night in MC klub, where together with traditional snacks (‘zakuski’), beverages (read = vodka) and music, people competed in a tricky test for Russianness, discovered new facts about Russian culture and language and enjoyed themselves while having their shots of the world-famous 40C drink.

The evening was opened by splendid Dmitry performing – guess what! –the sovietic hymn on the electric guitar. The greatness of this action felt in the air and made all the visitors stand up in full obedience and respect  :)) When the desired bizarre effect was reached, I came up on the stage to continue the evening, passing the ‘ushanka’ hat from Dima’s head to mine on the way.

Thanks to Urska, this brilliant guitar performance is recorded and you can watch it right now on your screen: https://www.facebook.com/mladinski.centerbrezice/videos/1306551639438270/

Later on the public got to know everything about our Russian pickling traditions and drinking-methods, and, of course, many wanted to try everything themselves straight away:

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EVS Blog © Mladinski center Brežice 2012

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