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The Secrets to Raising a Smarter Child
- By Inderbir Sandhu, Ph.D


~ B R A I N Y - Z I N E ~

" Learn How to Nurture A Smarter Kid "

Volume #9   Issue #6

ISSN: 0219-7642    Sep 19, 2010

Andrew Loh, Publisher

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Time flies, don't you think? We are almost into the last quarter of 2010 now. Have you ever wondered why time flies faster as you get older? There is a theory to explain that,

Some researchers seem to think that the perception time speeds up as we age has a lot to do with the amount of experience we acquire as we age and the relative lack of experience with novel, intriguing new experiences. They propose that when we're young, and almost everything is new and interesting, much more information has to get encoded in the brain. Our first walk in the forest, our first day of school, our first kiss, etc. all stimulate our senses and flood our brains with a deluge of previously unknown information. The processing of all this information takes time and is actually quite exhausting.

Doing things that have become routine - like driving to work every day - don't require any new processing, and the experience seems to go by quickly. So, it appears the brain is wired in such a way that when we learn something for the first time, the experience itself appears to take more time. Some researchers note that when most people think of early experiences that are deeply etched in memory, even the act of remembering or reliving them appears to go in slow motion.

Another explanation for why time appears to go by faster as we age goes like this: we get older, especially in our 60s and 70s, memories become more precious than ever, and when people recount their experiences, they tend to give almost every detail.


Thought for today:
"Each day we make deposits in the memory banks of our children." - Charles Swindoll

Best Regards,
Andrew Loh
Andrew Loh
Publisher & Editor, BrainyZine


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Facilitating Early Learning in Young Toddlers through Active Learning Techniques
Early learning in toddlers is a topic of immense interest. Early learning in your child occurs right through the birth and you may need to facilitate it by learning the basic principles of learning.

Boosting Early Learning in Toddlers through Active Play
Active play is the best form of early learning. Children simply love to play. Active play can help your child learn a number of skills. Active play in toddlers is limited to a few numbers of rudimentary activities.


Q1: I have a 2.8 year old, who regularly dazzles us with his reasoning, observation and ability to grasp things. We have many in the family and friend circle who have already labeled him gifted. To name a few things -

  • He can easily do jigsaw puzzles up to 40 pieces without help after he has seen them once.

  • He can relate things very interestingly. For example - when I told him that what he sees in the mirror was his reflection, he told me that he can also see his reflection in my eye! He was only 2.5 yrs old when he did that. Or he will see a flower and tell us that it is a 'carrot flower' since it is shaped and has color of a carrot.

  • His vocabulary is amazing, which is a constant source of wonder for us. It is definitely much advanced than other kids of his age....

My question is - I am tempted to homeschool him, since he responds very well to whatever i do with him...we usually learn the fun way. But I would like advice from an expert. Do you think homeschooling if done right will help a kid like mine? Would you rather suggest a school environment where teachers can understand if i tell them that my child might have higher capabilities?.

A: It was heart-warming to see a child so advanced at a young age and how hard you work to help him, and the poem is absolutely beautiful! I have no doubt that he is way above average and would need differentiation education to cater for his advanced abilities. Now, homeschooling is a very tough decision but for the right child, if done appropriately, I believe it would definitely benefit him. However, for now, it is a little early to tell or suggest homeschooling as a schooling option...Continue to read Dr. Sandhu's answer on Homeschooling a Gifted Child here.

Q2: My daughter, Heidi, is just two and a half this month, but after reading an article in a sainsbus's little one's book about a very intelligent three year old that's a member of Mensa, it made me wonder about her, as the list of things the mum has listed, my daughter was doing at a little earlier age to her little one. For example;

  • Heidi didn't crawl for more than 3 days, she was walking at 11 months, running at 12mths.

  • She could say two or three word responses by 14 months, she now speaks in full sentences.

  • She understands humor in conversation.

  • Recognises her name on paper.

  • She can also do basic Maths such as "if mummy has one apple in this hand, and two apples in this one, how many apples is there?" and she also knows that if I take one away to count backwards.....

Does this mean she may be as intelligent as i believe her to be, or am i just really enjoying my daughter's characteristics and she's as average as any 2 years old? If she is an intelligent child, how would I go about having her IQ tested so she can be given the best start in education that I can give her??

A: I believe she is as intelligent as you believe her to be! You are indeed the best person to be the judge of this and you have compared her to a member of Mensa who is older. The description certainly places her in the advanced group.

I believe that intelligence testing for very young children may not be very helpful. I understand that you want to give her the best of education and a head start but at such an early age, she has much to learn to be tested. Therefore, a mere intelligence score may not be very helpful. The reasons for testing should be...Continue to read Dr. Sandhu's answer on IQ Testing for Highly Able Toddlers here.

Q3: My son just turned 6 years old (end of July). He is extremely intelligent - can do addition (and sometimes subtraction) in his head, identify where all the states (and some countries) are located on a map (including using north, south, east and west directions) and is a quick study when it comes to things scientific....

The issue is that he can't read yet. He can identify some words and has been able to identify all of the letters and print them for the past couple of years, but he can't/won't sound words out. It's almost as if he's bored. By the time I was his age, I was reading on an 8th grade level and was described as "gifted"; but then again, I didn't have his proficiency with Math, Science and Geography. My question is, is this normal, or should I be getting him extra help with his reading

A: He surely appears to be above average with his abilities; however, I suspect he may have a reading problem which definitely needs to be checked. Since he is advanced in most other tasks, reading seems difficult and by this stage, if he is behind, intervention should be considered. I believe he may have stealth dyslexic, but for a proper diagnosis, it is best to have him tested for appropriate and early intervention ... Continue to read Dr. Sandhu's answer on Advanced Abilities but Unable to Read here.


Tender Care and Early Learning: Supporting Infants and Toddlers in Child Care Settings
By Jacalyn Post and Mary Hohmann

Caregivers in infant-toddler group settings will welcome this manual describing High/Scope's active learning approach with babies and children under preschool age. It's all there-the elements of active learning; key experiences for sensory-motor learners; the organization of space and materials; children's daily schedules and care giving routines; and adult support based on child observation, team planning, and partnerships with parents.

Learn how these all come together to promote tender care and early learning for the “under threes” in High/ScopeŽ child care centers and child care homes!


Educating Young Children: Active Learning Practices for Preschool and Child Care Programs
By Mary Hohmann

The updated chapters include information on phonemic awareness and preschool reading, additional references, the latest Perry Preschool research results, recent research relating to brain development, and a complete description of a consistent approach to problem solving.

Written for early childhood practitioners and students, this manual presents essential strategies adults can use to make active learning a reality in their programs. Describes key components of the adult's role: planning the physical setting and establishing a consistent daily routine; creating a positive social climate; and using High/Scope's 58 “key experiences” in child development to understand and support young children.



Parenting: How to raise a smart, happy baby
ABC Sep 14, 2010

How do I raise a smart child? Are Baby Einstein videos the answer? Should I teach my baby a foreign language or a musical instrument by age 3 to maximize brain development? And how do I get them to be sweet and well-behaved on the road to super-brilliance?

Brain food for school lunches
The Examiner Aug 31, 2010

Now that most schools are back in session, it comes time to deal with the endless chore of packing your child's lunch. Let's admit it, at first every parent can pack a balanced and healthy lunch. As the school weeks turn into months, lunch can become a casualty of time and energy depletion.

Fable Before Sleep Helps Child Development
ABC Sep 06, 2010

The mothers may impose a supervisor who is right and good-hearted because the child is a gift from God. as with the little fairy tales before bed, the mother in providing input to encourage the child to tell a tale in front of it because this is very helpful in the development of the child's brain also ability in speaking or talking.

Your Baby Can Read - Really?
Consumer Affairs Sep 13, 2010

Every parent hopes to give their child a leg up over their peers, but how early is too early? The increasingly competitive nature of preschools pressures parents to consider early reading programs that may not guarantee academic success.

Help your child succeed in school
Fosters Sep 14, 2010

Now that another school year is here, children are heading back to the classroom and parents might wonder what they can do to help their children succeed in school.

Raising Socially Responsible Gifted Kids
Suit 101 Aug 18, 2010

Gifted children are the future scientists of our society. Instilling a sense of responsibility for the care of the planet in the highly intelligent child is vital to the future. Even a toddler can appreciate a growing vegetable garden and the fascinating creatures and plantings that dwell within her grasp, as she pulls weeds with her dad each summer evening.

Maths prodigy, now 15, heads for Cambridge
The Guardian Sep 02, 2010

At 15, most teenagers are struggling to get their heads around the algebra and equations of maths GCSE. Not Arran Fernandez. Next month, he will become the youngest student at Cambridge University for 237 years - aged 15 and three months.


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