The Edge Brain Builder

MaKing a great-brainWe will be starting a course on Making a Good Brain Great in the near future.

Take advantage of these short years to give students knowledge that will enable them to expand the potential of their own brains, learn about the science behind the brain, and come face-to-face with how their decisions now will influence who they will become!

All over North America, this groundbreaking new course in brain science has been changing lives of students and providing insight and hope in new and exciting ways.

We will be publishing excerpts from this course to our website blog, Facebook.

Enroll your child today as this class will fill quickly. Class size is only 10 and will begin as soon as 10 are enrolled. E-mail or call the below for more details.

(760) 600-5148
E-mail tod(at)


Edge – Emotions


Being Able to Name Emotions Helps You Manage Them. Have you ever noticed that you often don’t know what you feel? Do you sometimes feel like you’re walking around in an emotional fog, knowing that you feel bad or upset, but not being able to really name the emotion you’re feeling? If you don’t know what emotion you’re feeling, it’s really hard to do anything about that emotion or to help yourself tolerate it. Once you can put a name on an emotion, you can often figure out what to do about it.
Dijk, Sheri Van (2011-03-01). Don’t Let Your Emotions Run Your Life for Teens:

At the Fallbrook Edge Life Skills Center we teach our youth how to recognize and properly respond.

The Edge Open House

Family_2Open House Announcement

My name is Tod Cunningham, and I would like to invite you to our Open House. Come and learn about the Edge Life Skills Center and curriculum topics. You are encouraged to attend this event if only to learn about what is available to the youth of Fallbrook.

Date: May 20th 2013
Time: 3:30
Location: 325 N Brandon Rd, Fallbrook, CA 92028

ConcernedSELF-SABOTAGING BEHAVIORS There are three types of people in this world: the “wills,” the “won’ts,” and the “can’ts.” The first type accomplish everything. The second oppose everything. The third fail at everything. People who accomplish much certainly are competent, but their attitude also makes a huge difference. A positive attitude will definitely help you avoid being part of the second group. And if you learn how to handle failure correctly, you’ll be able to keep yourself out of the third group.

Maxwell, John C. (2006-08-29).

To learn more see


fam 2Two men were out fishing. When the fish stopped biting, they started to talk. One man praised his wife and extolled her many virtues, summing it up by saying, “You know, if all men were like me, they would all want to be married to my wife.” “And if they were like me,” the other replied, “none of them would want to be!” Everybody’s different. Each person is born a unique individual. We’re all as different as our fingerprints. That’s true even of siblings born of the same parents and brought up in the same household. Even twins who are genetically identical have distinct personalities. Your personality type—your natural “wiring”— impacts your attitude. That’s not to say that you’re trapped by your personality, because you’re not. But your attitude is certainly impacted by it.

Maxwell, John C. (2006-08-29).


Angery_small_boyHave you ever heard someone say, “Attitude is everything”? It seems to be a favorite line of some motivational speakers. According to them, a great attitude is all you need to be successful. Unfortunately, it’s simply not true.

So does a good attitude make any difference? Absolutely. Attitude is the difference maker! Attitude isn’t everything, but it is one thing that can make a difference in your life. Businessman, philanthropist, and author W. Clement Stone stated, “There is little difference in people, but the little difference makes a big difference. The little difference is attitude. The big difference is whether it is positive or negative.”

Maxwell, John C. (2006-08-29). The Difference Maker: Making Your Attitude Your Greatest Asset


EmotionsWhen children do not master a new skill, because their parents or teachers are reluctant to point out ways that can help them perfect it, they do not develop the self-respect that results from mastery. In addition, children are likely to interpret a lack of criticism as a lack of confidence in their abilities. They may believe: “If she thought I was capable of learning this, she would help me to learn how to do it better.” The subtle message they receive is that they “can’t.”

Building Children’s Self-Esteem (Child Psychology) (Kindle Locations 135-139). William Gladden Press. Kindle Edition.

Your Number One Responsibility as a Parent

“Mindfulness: Allowing an emotion to take hold and pass without acting on it.
—Benedict Carey1”

Your child is fairly certain to act like a child, which means someone who is still learning, has different priorities than you do, and can’t always manage her feelings or actions. Her childish behavior is guaranteed, at times, to push your buttons. The problem is when we begin acting like a child, too. Someone has to act like a grown-up, if we want our child to learn how! If, instead, we can stay mindful—meaning we notice our emotions and let them pass without acting on them—we model emotional regulation, and our children learn from watching us.
There’s a reason the airlines tell us to put on our own oxygen masks first. Kids can’t reach those masks or be relied on to use them properly. If we lose function, our kids can’t save us, or themselves. So even if we would sacrifice ourselves to save our kids, it’s our responsibility to “put on our own masks first.

Kids can’t manage their own rage by themselves, either. They can’t find their way through the tangle of jealousy that pushes them to whack their little sister. They need our help to handle the fear that we don’t love them because they somehow just aren’t quite good enough. They know that if they were good enough, they wouldn’t want to hit their sister, or sneak that piece of candy, or throw themselves down on the floor and scream. But they can’t help themselves, however hard they try not to. (Sort of like when we eat that extra piece of cake.)
So just as with the oxygen mask, it’s your job to help your child with his emotions, which is what helps him with his behavior. Unfortunately, when you’re stressed out, exhausted, and running on empty, you can’t be there constructively for your child any more than if you black out on the plane.”

“That’s why your first responsibility in parenting is being mindful of your own inner state. Mindfulness is the opposite of “losing” your temper. Don’t get me wrong—mindfulness doesn’t mean you don’t feel anger. Being mindful means that you pay attention to what you’re feeling, but don’t act on it. Anger is part of all relationships. Acting on it mindlessly, with words or actions, is what compromises our parenting.
Emotions are useful, like indicator lights on a dashboard. If you saw a blinking red light in your car, you wouldn’t cover it up or tear out the wiring that caused it, right? You would listen to the information and act on it, for instance, by taking your car in for an oil change. The challenge with human emotions is that so often we’re confused about what to do when we feel them. We’re hardwired to respond to all “negative” emotion (those blinking red lights in your psyche that light up throughout your day) in one of “three ways: fight, flight, or freeze.
Those strategies work well in most emergencies. But parenting—despite our fears—is not usually an emergency. Usually, in parenting and in life, the best response to upsetting emotions is to reflect, not react. In other words, don’t take action while you’re triggered.
You can count on finding yourself hijacked by fight-or-flight hormones at times, but if you can train yourself to notice when you start to lose it, you have the choice to return yourself back to a state of equilibrium. That peaceful place inside ensures that our actions are wise and loving.
But what happens when we just can’t get there? When something our child is doing is driving us crazy, and all our efforts to calm down aren’t working?”

Excerpt From: Dr. Laura Markham. “Peaceful Parent, Happy Kids.”


Let Your Teen Lead

Anything they can do, they should do If you want teens to learn leadership, you must let them lead. That sounds rather obvious, doesn’t it? Yet it’s astonishing how many adults try to teach leadership by taking on the leadership role themselves and hoping that the teens will follow their example.

Developing Teen Leadership: A Practical Guide for Youth Group Advisors, Teachers and Parents by Dan Appleman

Youth Leadership

Imagine a group of teenagers. They are self-confident, ambitious, responsible, able and eager to set goals and accomplish them. They treat each other well, supporting each other in times of need, and even when it isn’t particularly needed. They have good moral values, and academic success is prized. And while they welcome and even seek out advice from trusted adults, they actually manage their group with virtually no supervision.