Interactive Metronome (IM) uses special interactive equipment in order to improve your child's sense of rhythm and timing. This is a form of occupational therapy that enhances the mental ability to plan, sequence, and process information; it has been shown to be effective with many children with ADHD and various learning disabilities.
With this program, your child performs a set of repetitive hand or foot exercises in time with a computer-generated beat; he wears headsets to listen to guide tones, and sensors attached to his hand or foot send signals back to the computer. If your child hits ahead of the beat, he hears an auditory guide tone in the left side of his head; if he hits after the beat, the tone comes from the right.
When your child is able to hit on the beat, a reward tone is heard simultaneously through both ears. The computer records reaction time in milliseconds and provides a score; the goal is to reduce the time interval to optimum levels.
Research shows that children with dyslexia have difficulty detecting beats in sounds with a strong rhythm. Awareness of beats may influence the way young children assimilate speech patterns and affect their ability to break down the sounds of words. One dyslexia researcher has found that classroom music lessons help build phonologic and spelling skills.
By learning to keep the beat, your child becomes better able to sustain focus, disregard distractions, and stay on task for longer periods of time. This program is done under the guidance of a specially trained therapist, and takes about three to five weeks to complete, with three- to five-hour-long sessions each week.