Why Heguru is the Best Right Brain School

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Since the decision to move Gavin from Heguru to Shichida, I have been scouting around for more right brain training materials to supplement Gavin’s and Gareth’s right brain program at home.  I was looking particularly for stuff like the memory boards and Mandala activities and managed to locate two online stores.  The photographic memory kit contains a series of memory games that are very similar to the activities played in Heguru (and, apparently, Shichida).  The online store – Right Brain Education Shop – is located in Singapore and is run by a lovely lady named Janice.  Janice’s sister, Rachel, lives in Malaysia and helps her out with customers in Malaysia so I was able to get the kit directly and save on shipping.

Dilemmas, dilemmas…

When I went to pick up the kit, I started chatting with Rachel and we talked about what I was doing with the kids in terms of right brain education.  Rachel, who has had the experience of sending her children to TweedleWink, Shichida, and Heguru and a personal insight to the people who run the programs said that if there was only one right brain school she could send her children to, it would be Heguru.

Why?  This is her reasoning:

Glenn Doman may have been the founder of the Gentle Revolution, but it is Makoto Shichida who is the father of right brain education.  Being one of the pioneers in the field of right brain development, Shichida has the greatest experience in helping to bring out the right brain in children.  He has not only been around a lot longer but he’s also got the credentials in right brain development.

Why Heguru and not Shichida?

There are several reasons offered by Rachel (for the record I do not know the validity of some of this information since I have no connection to it.  I’m only repeating what I heard from someone whom I believe ought to know more than me on this subject):

1. Although Heguru was born out of Shichida, it was Heguru that took the Shichida program and improved upon it.  It was Heguru that developed “wave reading” and taught it back to Shichida.  Apparently, wave reading really kicks in from 6-12 years so it is important to continue your child’s right brain development program beyond the first six years.

2. Heguru only requires parents compulsory attendance for children up to three years old. Thereafter, children are required to attend class on their own.  Shichida requires parents to be present even after the first three years.  The issue with this is that right brain development is very emotional and if a parent has negative thoughts, it can negatively impact the child.  That’s not to say that parents intentionally create negative feelings.  Sometimes it is unintentional, for instance, if a child fails to perform up to the standard of another child, the parent of that child might feel bitterness, jealousy, or even disappointment in her own child.  No matter how well that parent may try to hide it, children read their parents’ emotions like an open book.  Any negative reaction, no matter how well hidden, will be felt by the child and that will impact upon the child’s learning.

3. The standard of Shichida has dropped since they first launched in Malaysia.  Unlike Heguru, the teachers are no longer being sent to Japan for training.  Heguru teachers are still being sent to Japan for training.  Like some of the other mothers I had spoken to, Rachel believes the standard of the teachers at Shichida have dropped which is supposedly due to the poor wages offered by Shichida.  A lot of the good teachers have left Shichida either to join Heguru or to do their own thing.

As I said before, I don’t know the validity of the information for the last point, but she does have a point regarding Makoto Shichida being the father of right brain.  Although Rachel agrees that the TweedleWink program is a good program, she still believes that Heguru is better for results and strongly urged me to reconsider sending Gavin back to Heguru.  She didn’t discourage the TweedleWink program.  In fact she believes that Gavin may enjoy the TweedleWink program even more.  However, at the end of the day, if you have to make a choice, it should be Heguru.

The primary reason why I wanted to move Gavin from Heguru to TweedleWink is because I liked the pace and philosophy of TweedleWink more.  The environment felt friendly and more laid back.  Additionally, they offered me weekend morning classes which Heguru did not have.  Now I’m unsure what to do.  I have committed to start Gavin at TweedleWink and terminated his classes at Heguru, but it isn’t too late to continue his classes at Heguru.  Having missed out on tapping into the first three years of Gavin’s right brain potential, I am loathe to do the wrong thing by him now.  And now I’m starting to sound like a kiasu Mum…  but there’s a reason for it and I’ll tell you why in the next post.

Shichida, Heguru, Right Brain Education

Published by Shen-Li

SHEN-LI LEE is the author of “Brainchild: Secrets to Unlocking Your Child’s Potential”. She is also the founder of Figur8.net (a website on parenting, education, child development) and RightBrainChild.com (a website on Right Brain Education, cognitive development, and maximising potentials). In her spare time, she blogs on Forty, Fit & Fed, and Back to Basics.

17 thoughts on “Why Heguru is the Best Right Brain School

  1. Feedback from my experience learning the Shichida Method:
    – attending classes with my child is actually a plus point that I look for. Shichida stresses that parents’ feelings affect children’s learning. Knowing this ‘forces’ me to open up my heart, accept my child completely and attend the class with him in a relaxed manner. Classes take place only 1hr a week. If a parent would affect a child’s learning in class for that 1hr, it would be no better at home.

    If the parent needs to be improved, it is better to let the sinsei see the situation and provide feedback to him/her. Of course, not every sinsei would do so.

    – I don’t about Shichida centres’ quality in the past, yet the current standard is excellent.
    * The sinsei of our class is fantastic.
    * The centre provides a range of (usually free) sessions to help parents help their children learn: Parent Education Course, Home Practice Sharing Sessions, etc.

    * There are many ready materials designed & conceptualized by the current principal that parents can buy for home practice. The materials are of high standard. This saves the time & risk of buying products outside.

    * There are many positive testimonials from children who learn from the Shichida Method, even until now, so the standard seems to be well-maintained.

    * The principal mentioned that the methodology is constantly being updated according to latest research by the Shichida Institute. I am placing my trust in this.

    To conclude, the Shichida centre has given us great value and we intend to stick with it. (I read all your posts on the other schools and still not convinced to switch. Ha!) If you are re-considering, how about trying Shichida Method for a term? This way, you would experience all 3 to compare. (Of course, the long-term results can’t be compared.) At least you get to attend classes for parents and see/buy the materials.


  2. I think it’s great that you have a good attitude about it. I guess the thing is that you have to protect your child not only from your negative feelings but perhaps the negative feelings of other parents in the room.

    With every class or program, the teaching is only as good as the sensei. That varies from person to person, even within the same school. Sometimes it’s not even that but the relationship between you or your child with the teacher. For instance, I wanted to change Gavin adores his Heguru sensei. When I asked him what he liked best about his “special” class, he said his sensei.

    To be frank there are things I have not liked about Heguru – the limited home materials, however, would be the main point. Then again, there are things I don’t quite like about Shichida either. Though I would love to have experiences with all three schools so I can make proper comparisons (just to make my blog posts more complete), I’m afraid I would not consider Shichida for several reasons:

    1. The waitlist at the centerpoint branch is too long and I think it would be disruptive to Gavin and Gareth to keep swapping them between right brain schools.

    2. The city branch is not convenient because traffic is bad all the time and since I’m the driver, I’m the one who’s got to deal with cranky kids in the car – which I could do for a couple of trips but not on a regular basis.

    3. I also dislike the city branch because the car park is dingy and I feel it is too quiet for a Mum and baby. It’s okay if you’re there with someone else, but I tend to go alone to these things.

    4. It’s hard enough getting time off from the kids to go on a date with the hubby. It’s going to be tough to get time off to attend their compulsory parent course.

    My posts were never intended to get you to switch. They were supposed to provide information about right brain education and the available schools. I have found the information available on the internet wanting and felt that since I am investigating for myself, I should share what I know. At the end of the day, the best center for your child is the one that makes them happy because the right brain can’t learn if it isn’t happy. To be quite frank, I’ve come to realise my mistake in all of this – TweedleWink classes appeal to me, but I really have no idea if they will appeal to Gavin or if Gareth might actually prefer Heguru.

    I have another blog post coming up which examines some of the stuff I’ve heard from TweedleWink philosophy. I won’t repeat it here, so just look out for it.

    No school is perfect, but I do want to highlight what all the problems are as I see them so that other parents who don’t know much about right brain education can make a decision based on their priorities.


  3. Yes, no school is perfect indeed. 🙂 In fact, I was prepared to accept even a sub-standard sinsei. Reasons:
    – I place higher priority on the school’s methodology and home-practice materials. Home practice is the key to successful left-right brain education, so my objective of going to classes is to learn the method then practice it well at home.

    – Every term, there is a possibility of changing class or getting a new sinsei. Therefore, it is highly possible to get a sub-standard one someday. I’d just bear with that for 1hr/wk.

    Certainly look forward to your other post(s). 🙂


  4. Yes, I agree that home practice is very important. I’ve observed Gavin’s advancement in class just by adding a little home practice with him.

    Even so, I still think it’s good to have a good sensei – at least one who can carry out the class properly. If she conducts the class poorly, it means my child is absorbing poorly presented – possibly wrongly presented – material. That would not be good.


  5. Hi Shen-Li,

    Since I sent Em to Heguru, I hunt some right brain worksheet thru the chinese website, she enjoys doing it.

    The things that I dislike Heguru will be the tight time-table and “busy” carpark on Friday. It is a killer for me to get the car park either in MV or The Garden, few times I been driving for almost an hours still unable to get a carpark, I have to call the admin to said we unable to attend the class.

    I have transferred Em from Heguru to Insight-kids @ Damansara Heights near Victoria Station, Jalan Kasah. The Time-table suit me and the teacher will giving me feedback every session completed, parent no need to accompany the child. Also small group / class. English is much better conducted. They didn’t do flash card, this school is doing a whole brain development. I knew this school by accidentally when I searching a holiday programme for Em.

    You may visit their website for more details.

    [Whole Brain & Character Development Program
    The InsightKIDs Whole-Brain and Character Development Program utilizes all 11 subjects through 4 Skills Stations to develop your child in four learning areas :-

    Analytical, Critical Thinking, Cognitive Processing and Concentration Skills, Logic, Memory and Organizational Skills, Interpersonal and Socio-Emotional Skills, Creative Thinking, Mindmapping and Strategic Thought.

    Age 2-4 years InsightKIDs Budding Stars Program
    Age 4-6 years InsightKIDs Discovery Program
    Age 7-9 years InsightKIDs Explorers Program
    Age 10-12 years InsightKIDs Cornerstone Program]


  6. Hi Mums,

    Thanks a lot for sharing such valuable info!. I have a few questions to ask you about the Shichida Method. What do you think about the center in BU? How are the teachers? Would you HONESTLY recommend it to other mums looking to help their kids reach newer potential? What are its negative aspects, if you have any? Please do let me know.


  7. Hey Jo – thanks for the info. I saw Insight kids, too, and was quite keen but felt that Gavin was already attending too many activities. Also don’t know if he will attend a class without me 😦 I’m keen to get him started on something sporty, though. I think he’s too sedentary. May consider insight kids for Gareth when he’s older.

    Hi Pooji – I hope one of the other mothers can answer your question. I have not had any personal experience with Shichida so cannot comment.


  8. Dear everybody,

    I’m a former Shichida sensei and we are trained by head teachers from Japan Shichida HQ. To save cost, Shichida send Japanese head teacher and Shichida daughter to Singapore to train us. Or wages is quite alright. It’s just that everyone need a transition in their life and many parents cannot expect senseis to stay with their children from infancy till 7 years old.

    I agree with Mievee @Mummyreviews. The methodology is constantly being updated according to latest research by the Shichida Institute. It’s more to whether you are lucky enough to be placed with good Sensei who practice it.

    Parents should accompany their child until 6 years old. If not, why be a parent? Your child need your love. Parents cannot avoid other parents are jealous and full of hostility. That is their problem, not yours. Just focus on your child. Once he or she is rest assured and filled with confidence due to your love, the child will be independent and disciplined.As Shichida once said, parents bonding also meant having FAITH in your child. To all parents,how deep is your faith in your child?

    It’s also a chance for you to practice to send positive vibration consistently to your child if he or she did not do well in certain games.

    Heguru is a former Shichida head teacher too. She did a great job too.


    1. Hello Former Shichid teacher,

      Thank you very much for sharing your knowledge and insight. I regret that when I wrote this post, I was naive and very green in the world of right brain education. Like many new parents embarking on this journey, the quest is always to find the “best” school. I have since learned that there is no “best” for everyone, but what is most appropriate for each individual child. Getting to know more about each of the schools there are things I like about each school and things I don’t like about them. Even my children have preferences on which one they enjoy most and it is not necessarily the same one. It is now my conclusion that we are lucky to have a choice of right brain schools to choose from and that it is better for parents to decide for themselves which school suits them and their families best.

      I agree that it is not possible for a child to be with the same teacher for the entire 7 years, but it is disruptive to a child if the teachers change too frequently. Again, for some children, this is more critical than for others. Some children form bonds easily (my younger son for example) while others react poorly to constant changes (my older son is a great example).

      “Parents should accompany their child until 6 years old. If not, why be a parent?” I understand your sentiments and I feel strongly about it, too. I do agree that parents who aren’t invested in their children really have no business being parents. However, I do realise that circumstances vary considerably for different parents which can affect how they deal with their children. I do believe that every parent has their child’s best interest at heart. It is easy to stand on a hill and make a judgment but until you wear the shoes of another individual, you cannot fully appreciate the reasons why they do what they do. For instance, you could say the same about parents who work. You could say that a parent should stay at home and look after their child, if not, why be a parent? But circumstances do not permit that for some parents. They may not have the luxury to stay at home.

      I have also noticed that children behave differently in the presence or absence of their parents. Some children actually do better without their parents around. For instance, when my older son goes swimming with his uncle, he is bolder and more gregarious in the water. When I take him swimming, he refuses to swim away from me. Even his uncle has told me it is better for me not to be around when they go swimming because my presence is disruptive to his efforts to teach my son to swim. As much as it crushes me to hear that, when I hear of the things my son has accomplished in my absence, I have to agree that it is for the best where swimming is concerned.

      So yes, the three right brain schools that I know of – Shichida, Heguru and TweedleWink all have their own strengths. We are lucky to have such terrific schools to choose from and privileged to be able to send our children to any one of these schools.


  9. I’ve read several articles about Heguru over the past couple of months. I have a nephew and my sister has been trying to find a good center for her child. Where is Heguru located here in Singapore? We hope to check it out. Thanks! 🙂


  10. Hi Jennifer Daanoy and MieVee@MummysReviews.com,

    I’m both happy and proud to share that Heguru has in fact come to Singapore. You can visit our Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/HeguruEducation or drop us an email at enquiry@hegurueducation.com.sg for more information.

    For Singapore parents to have a better understanding of Heguru education, we are inviting the founders Mrs Ruiko Henmi and Mr Hirotada Henmi to Singapore to conduct a seminar. It will be a rare and valuable opportunity for parents to learn from and ask questions directly to the highly respected Heguru founders.

    Details are as follows:

    Date: 8 December 2012
    Time: To be confirmed
    Venue: To be confirmed

    Please follow the link below to register for the Founders’ Seminar for FREE. We will keep you updated once the seminar details have been finalized.

    Hope to see you!


  11. So exciting to learn that Heguru is coming to Singapore. Heard many good reviews from my friends in Australia about Heguru.

    There are three centres in Singapore. Can visit Heguru Japan Website (www.heguru.com/sg).

    Interestingly, two centres have gotten their websites done. Can check out http://www.hegurumethod.com.sg & http://www.hegurueducation.com.sg

    There are three Heguru centres in Singapore all opening at the same time with apparently three different business owners. Makes it difficult for me as a parent to choose which centre is better. Need to get to know the three different centre principals and teachers before I make up my mind which centre I will send my son to. 😉


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