RICH Learning: The Brilliant Neurology and Crazy-Effective Fun of Brain-Based Learning on Arts-Based Platforms

After 33 1/3 years in education, stand-up comedy, cartooning, youth work, speaking and publishing, the amateur neurologist and slightly dyslexic entrepreneur Rich Melheim started learning Mandarin, earned a doctorate in semiotics and immediately became a preschool teacher... in India.

He wanted to learn how little brains and aging brains learn. What did he learn about learning? To learn anything new you must first open the child’s mind and attitude. And nothing does that like the Arts! The most valuable tools parents and teachers have in their teaching arsenal are absolutely free. Music. Dance. Theater. Art. Fun. Giggles. Wiggles. Once you have embedded new information with the Arts, the next steps are to Recognize, Identify, Comprehend, and Harness (RICH... get it?) the new information to move it from short-term to long-term memory and hardwire it into usable knowledge. The results? Attention. Retention. And a life-long love of learning.

In a couple hours of witty and easy reading, this insatiably curious student of the human mind who was once dead on a hospital bed will take you on a fascinating journey through the neurology of optimal learning. He’ll explain why you need to throw out all the chairs in your classroom. All of them! Then he’ll leave you on the doorstep of becoming a richer and more engaging world-class parent or teacher the rest of your life. Guaranteed. Or he’ll buy you lunch. Oh, one more thing to remember. It doesn’t cost a nickel for a million-dollar smile.

Read a sample of the book

224 Pages
Soft Cover $19.95

Click to enlarge

Click to enlarge

RICH Learning Recommended Reading

RL Theory draws heavily upon and highly recommends these books and authors: 

"Human beings were never born to read," writes Tufts University cognitive neuroscientist and child development expert Maryanne Wolf. Reading is a human invention that reflects how the brain rearranges itself to learn something new. In this ambitious, provocative book, Wolf chronicles the remarkable journey of the reading brain not only over the past five thousand years, since writing began, but also over the course of a single child's life, showing in the process why children with dyslexia have reading difficulties and exceptional gifts.

In SPARK, John Ratey, MD, and Eric Hagerman embark upon a fascinating journey through the mind-body connection, illustrating that exercise is truly our best defense against everything from depression to ADD to addiction to menopause to Alzheimer's. Filled with amazing case studies from top turnaround schools throughout the United States, SPARK is the first book to extensively explore the connection between exercise and the brain. It will change forever the way you think about your morning run.


In the first comprehensive study of the relationship between music and language from the standpoint of cognitive neuroscience, Aniruddh D. Patel challenges the widespread belief that music and language are processed independently. Since Plato's time, the relationship between music and language has attracted interest and debate from a wide range of thinkers. Recently, scientific research on this topic has been growing rapidly. Scholars from diverse disciplines, including linguistics, cognitive science, music cognition, and neuroscience are drawn to the music-language interface as one way to explore how different mental abilities are processed by separate brain mechanisms. Accordingly, the relevant data and theories have been spread across a range of disciplines. This volume provides the first synthesis, arguing that music and language share deep and critical connections, and that comparative research provides a powerful way to study the cognitive and neural mechanisms underlying these uniquely human abilities.

Also Available: The Great Courses: Music and the Brain - a new video/audio just released by Aniruddh Patel

Most of us have no idea what’s really going on inside our heads. Yet brain scientists have uncovered details every business leader, parent, and teacher should know—like the need for physical activity to get your brain working its best. How do we learn? What exactly do sleep and stress do to our brains? Why is multi-tasking a myth? Why is it so easy to forget—and so important to repeat new knowledge? Is it true that men and women have different brains?  In Brain Rules, Dr. John Medina, a molecular biologist, shares his lifelong interest in how the brain sciences might influence the way we teach our children and the way we work. In each chapter, he describes a brain rule—what scientists know for sure about how our brains work—and then offers transformative ideas for our daily lives.

In this Pulitzer Prize finalist and national bestseller, one of the world's leading cognitive scientists tackles the workings of the human mind. What makes us rational―and why are we so often irrational? How do we see in three dimensions? What makes us happy, afraid, angry, disgusted, or sexually aroused? Why do we fall in love? And how do we grapple with the imponderables of morality, religion, and consciousness? ?How the Mind Works? synthesizes the most satisfying explanations of our mental life from cognitive science, evolutionary biology, and other fields to explain what the mind is, how it evolved, and how it allows us to see, think, feel, laugh, interact, enjoy the arts, and contemplate the mysteries of life. This new edition of Pinker's bold and buoyant classic is updated with a new foreword by the author.

In What Makes You Tick?, Thomas Czerner's elegant and accessible introduction to brain research, you'll encounter the scientists and discoveries that have exponentially increased our knowledge of the brain and its functions, most significantly in the last few years. Here, Czerner has translated the arcane language of scientific journals into a highly readable Baedeker of the brain, outlining all that is known about the modern brain and the amazing promise this understanding holds for the future. In addition to tracing the vast web of cerebral roadways, Czerner deftly follows the larger historical detective story that stars neurologists and their forebears, from philosophers Descartes and Kant, to twentieth-century polymaths Francis Crick and Edwin Land, to computer scientists, who have found that the brain's parallel circuitry offers an ideal design model for microprocessors.

In a handful of nations, virtually all children are learning to make complex arguments and solve problems they’ve never seen before. They are learning to think, in other words, and to thrive in the modern economy. Inspired to find answers for our own children, author and Time magazine journalist Amanda Ripley follows three Americans embed­ded in these countries for one year. Kim, fifteen, raises $10,000 so she can move from Oklahoma to Finland; Eric, eighteen, trades his high-achieving Minnesota suburb for a booming city in South Korea; and Tom, seventeen, leaves a historic Pennsylvania village for Poland.

Through these young informants, Ripley meets battle-scarred reformers, sleep-deprived zombie students, and a teacher who earns $4 million a year. Their stories, along with groundbreaking research into learning in other cultures, reveal a pattern of startling transformation: none of these countries had many “smart” kids a few decades ago. Things had changed. Teaching had become more rigorous; parents had focused on things that mattered; and children had bought into the promise of education.