Tutoring vs. Brain Training: Interventions for Students Who Struggle with Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis

If your child or teen has every struggled in school, your first instinct might have been to enroll them in tutoring. It makes sense, as that’s the intervention most parents are familiar with. But there are two parts to smart: the knowledge you acquire (e.g., history facts or math formulas) and how we process that information (e.g., learning, memorizing, understanding how and when to apply that math formula). Brain training helps with the latter. Today, cognitive psychologist Dr. Amy Moore and board-certified cognitive specialist Sandy Zamalis sit down to explain how to determine which intervention might best help your student based on their specific struggles, as well as how cognitive skills training addresses the root cause of learning challenges. They also offer some insight to help boost cognitive skills at home, including some free resources being offered to listeners. Whether you’ve tried tutoring with little (or temporary) results or are just starting your research into interventions to help your struggling student, you won’t want to miss this important episode.

Read more

How to Build Strong Reasoning Skills & the Foundation of Critical Thinking with Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis

On this episode of the Brainy Moms podcast, cognitive psychologist Dr. Amy Moore and board-certified cognitive specialist Sandy Zamalis continue our series on cognitive skills, focusing on logic & reasoning. Find out why this higher-level thinking skill is so vital—not only to subjects like math and science, but also reading and test-taking. You’ll even hear how behavior can be affected by underdeveloped logic and reasoning skills, including poor decision-making skills, and how parents can help guide their kids and teens to boost these skills. You’ll learn why critical thinking skills require strong underlying cognitive skills, as well as two free resources available for download.

Read more

Frustrated at Having to Repeat Yourself? Unpacking the Impacts of Weak Memory on Learning, Parenting, and Life with Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis

On this episode of the Brainy Moms podcast, cognitive psychologist Dr. Amy Moore and board-certified cognitive specialist Sandy Zamalis delve into the topic of memory. How many times have you asked your child to do a few chores, only to have them forget? You may have thought, “That kid just doesn’t listen.” But the reality is that your child’s probably got some cognitive skills—like working memory and/or auditory processing—that need a boost to help them think, learn, read, and remember. Or think about the time your teen studied late into the night for a test, only to get a poor grade. If they didn’t get a good night’s sleep to consolidate those memories, they forgot what they learned by the time the test rolled around. If you’re curious to better understand the two broad types of memory—working and long-term—and how those skills can be targeted and trained to help your student live up to their full potential in school, work, athletics, and life in general, you won’t want to miss this host-led episode. Listen to Dr. Amy and Sandy as they explain how these two cognitive skills play a vital role in learning, and why even smart kids can struggle if these skills aren’t strong.

Read more

Attention: What It Is, Why It Matters, What To Do About It with Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis

On this episode of the Brainy Moms podcast, cognitive psychologist Dr. Amy Moore and board-certified cognitive specialist Sandy Zamalisdelve into the topic of attention. Tune in to learn about the three primary types of attention, things parents can do at home to improve their child’s brain function, and different ways that ADHD is often addressed in the classroom. You’ll also hear about the findings of studies on cognitive skills, including the fact that attention isn’t actually the weakest brain skill in most people with ADHD. Find out what options you may have to boost your child’s cognitive skills to the point that they may no longer need classroom accommodations, and why perceived behavioral issues may actually be about dopamine levels in the brain. If you or someone you love struggles with attention-related challenges, you don’t want to miss this episode! 

Read more

The 411 on Cognitive Skills: What They Are, How They’re Trained, and How Strong Skills Make Learning Easier with Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis

On this episode, Dr. Amy and Sandy dig into cognitive skills. Learn what they are, how each of the major brain skills contributes to learning, andwhy someone—whether a child, teen, adult, or senior—might struggle if even one skill is holding them back from their full learning potential. Tune in to hear a sample demonstration from cognitive skills training and find out why accommodations and tutoring may not be helping your student, as well as which type of intervention might best address the challenges your child is facing. Join us for this high-level overview of cognitive skills before we tackle individual brain skills in future episodes.

Read more

Tired of yo-yo dieting? Losing weight isn’t just about what you eat (or when you eat it) with guest Matty Lansdown

Have you ever tried a diet and lost weight, only to put the weight back on a few months or a year later? Research shows that as many as 80% of overweight people who manage to slim down noticeably after a diet gain some or all of the weight back within one year. That staggering figure can be overwhelming and discouraging when we’re trying to lose weight.

Dr. Amy sat down with Matty Lansdown, founder of the Healthy Mums Collective, to discuss why so many diets leave us feeling frustrated and why the weight often comes back on, even with careful changes and restrictions. It was a fascinating conversation about our relationship with food and our inner child-inner parent relationship!

If you are looking for a gentle approach to healthy living—regardless of your current size—Matty takes an innovative approach to food, nutrition, and lifestyle that might get you started on a journey to self-love and caring for your body. These are tough topics, especially if you struggle with an eating disorder or body issues. But this is a no-shame conversation. Matty is an encourager and educates us on some different ways to think about and understand our ongoing relationship with food. As a yo-yo dieter, Dr. Amy appreciated Matty’s tip to just make “one tweak a week” to our eating habits. That seemed manageable to her. Our hope is that you’ll hear a tip that resonates with you as well. It’s a food-for-thought episode without judgement for anyone who wants to dig in a little to the topic of eating for better health.

Read more

Caring for your newborn: How to feel confident as a new mom (and when to worry) with guest Dr. Emeka Obidi

Are you a new mom? Do you love a new or soon-to-be mom? If you do, then this podcast episode is for you! It’s been a while since Dr. Amy and Dr. Jody were mothers of newborns, but the story hasn’t changed much: we are all just wondering if our babies are okay! Becoming a first-time mother may seem like an instinctual rite of passage for many women, but once baby is born, many of us find that we have more questions than answers. And it can be hard to know where to turn in the middle of the night when baby is crying! 

Dr. Amy and Dr. Jody sat down with Dr. Emeka Obidi, board-certified pediatrician and CEO of the Newborn Prep Academy, to talk about parenting a newborn. We asked some doozies: should baby boys be circumcised? When should we worry about a fever? What about vaccinations? Breastfeeding or formula feeding? Dr. Obidi shared his wisdom after more than 17 years as a practicing pediatrician, and we found his answers incredibly helpful—and graciously gentle. Join Dr. Obidi as he provides new moms with a Confident Mom Mindset!  

Read more

Self-care: It’s not selfish, and it’s probably not what you think! with guest Dr. Tamara Beckford

If you’ve ever felt stressed (like, you know, every other mom who’s lived through the past two years), and if you’ve ever tried to do something about it, it’s likely that someone, somewhere along the way, has asked you this question: “What do you do for self-care?” We know, we know, that can cause quite a visceral reaction! In fact, it does just that for our very own Dr. Amy. But—here’s the good news! According to our latest podcast guest, Dr. Tamara Beckford, self-care is probably not what you think! Join Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis as they chat with Dr. Beckford about her own self-care journey, where to start if you’re ready to embark on your own journey, and how very important our own self-care is to our children’s understanding of what it means to be a parent. Because, statistically speaking, many of them will eventually parent their own kids! We really enjoyed this conversation, and left with some personal, real-world ideas for how to reframe self-care as a reasonable practice—that may or may not involve journaling OR the nail salon.

Read more

How to help your kids successfully navigate the school system (Hint: it starts with a strong parent-teacher relationship) with guest Punam Saxena

Every family has their own set of goals for their children after they graduate high school and fly the nest. No matter whether your family’s goals are secondary education at an Ivy League institution, learning a trade at a vocational school, or heading straight into the workforce, parents can play an active role in their child’s education and help them safely experience both successes and failures as part of their journey.
Join Dr. Amy Moore and Sandy Zamalis for a chat with Punam Saxena, author of Parent Power: Navigate School and Beyond. Punam shares her tips and tricks for navigating the school system and creating positive relationships between parents and teachers so that they can work together to help their children safely experience both the highs of great success, and the lows of difficult, sometimes unexpected, failures. Punam explains why it’s important to provide a safe place for children to fail while they are still living at home, so that they can independently navigate the world of secondary education, the workforce, and beyond.

Read more

Want to Heal Your Trauma? Don’t Start with Therapy, Start with the Body! with guest Dr. Aimie Apigian

Whether we know it or not, each of us is carrying trauma inside of our bodies. Even with a charmed childhood, there are moments in your life when you experienced a feeling of overwhelm. Each time we don’t work through those feelings, they add to our unresolved trauma. We carry all of that trauma into our adulthood—and into motherhood. Dr. Amy Moore and Teri Miller sat down with Dr. Aimie Apigian, who is the creator of the Biology of Trauma Methodology. Dr. Aimie explains to Dr. Amy and Teri how therapy is actually not the first step in healing our trauma, despite what we have been taught—and what many of us have tried.

Read more