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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 #7   Issue #16

ISSN: 0219-7642    March 22, 2009

Andrew Loh, Publisher

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Learning or mastering how to solve problems is a very useful tool in understanding or analyzing difficult situations. Situations or scenarios that look too complex and difficult to understand can be resolved or solved with considerable ease. Solving problems is also a defense mechanism that nature provides us as a precious gift. People who learn how to solve complex problems seem to be the most successful in both personal and professional life.

Children aged between two and eight are rather very poor in solving problems. This is quite obvious and common because of their tender age. Young children are not mature enough to understand that solving problem is a social skill and that it forms one of the most critical life skills. Failing to learn how to solve problem can act as a speed-breaker in the path of personal development.

Children who are adept at solving simple or complex problems are successful both in their classroom as well as home. They can easily verbalize and define their feelings, opinions and expressions. Problem solving technique for children could include a number of important skills to handle conflicts, learning how to fight back, escape from dangers or even learning how to solve emerging problems.

Solving problems is also about finding solutions! When your child develops skills to solve a pending problem, he or she will also learn notable positive qualities like clarity of mind, focus, analytical and evaluation powers. Other notable characters could include a sense of open mindedness and acquiring an ability to use the problematic situation to personal advantage.

As a parent, you may wish to learn the basics of solving problems, so that you can help and assist your children to learn and master the rudimentary technique for themselves. Exploring problematic situations and finding a proper solution will help your child to make life changing decisions. Acting as a mentor in this regard is possibly the best help that you can lend to your children. Have a nice day.

Thought for today:
"The sun illuminates only the eye of the man, but shines into the eye and the heart of the child" - Ralph Waldo Emerson

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


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Problem Solving Skills with Children Two to Eight - Part I
Problem solving is a social skill acquired by humans right from the birth. However, it could be very rudimentary in young children aged two to eight. Young children always respond to a problematic situation in their own way. It is always common to see them responding with arguments, defiance, anger and frustration. Thus, teaching problem solving techniques becomes very critical and important for parents.

Problem Solving Skills with Children Two to Eight - Part II
Problem solving skills and techniques involve a series of meaningful steps that focus on diffusing a critically problematic situation and later find a valid and amicable solution. Problem solving techniques are the invaluable tools that can help your child acquire a series of personal skills that are very important to life.


Q1: What is known about the WIPPSI-III? Is it a reliable measure of intelligence in preschoolers? What does each component measure? What does it mean for a child's future development? How does it compare with the WISC-IV and why would one test be used over another in 6-year olds? Since the WIPPSI doesn't require reading, how does it measure this capacity? What if a 4 - 5 year old child is already reading at a grade 2/3 level?

A: I assume that you meant the WPPSI III (Wechsler Preschool and Primary Scale of Intelligence - Third Edition). This is a test for preschooler which is from the Wechsler's group of tests that can be tested for children from 2.6 to 7.3 years of age. It is said to accurately measure intellectual abilities in young children. This newer version features shorter, more game-like activities that hold the attention of children as young as 2.6 years ... Continue to read Dr. Sandhu's answer on The WPPSI - III here.

Q2: My 12 year old daughter (7th grade) was identified as gifted and talented. She also has ADD and takes 20 mg of Adderall every am. She spoke early and learned quickly when she was younger. She has NO executive skills, procrastinates on everything, is easily frustrated and becomes overwhelmed when presented multiple processes ...... She was given the Cognitive Abilities Test in 2nd grade at age 7 and scored: verbal- 89, quantitative- 105, nonverbal- 117, composite- 104. I feel that something is just not right. I know these scores are in the average range, but there is a significant discrepancy between her verbal and nonverbal scores. The school does not want to test for a learning disability, but could she have a non verbal learning disability? If so, what sort of accommodations would benefit her? What else can I look for to help her?

A: There are quite a few of Nonverbal Learning Disability (NLD) characteristics that appears to show that there is a possibility for your daughter to have NLD, and the discrepancy in her CAT scores does indicate some kind of concern for her verbal abilities. Her problem with Math may be typical for a child with NLD, especially in understanding math concepts and solve problems. .... Continue to read Dr. Sandhu's answer on Possible Nonverbal Learning Disability here.

Q3: My 4th grader just received the results of his Terra Nova scores. His total score was 91. However, his CSI was 104. That being said, this is a child who has been reading since he was 4, and always interested in learning. He has never received a grade below a 92 in ANYTHING! My concern is the discrepancy. I am afraid there is more than a test taking issue, or are those scores not as bad as I think? Thanks.

A: I can understand your concern especially after what you described of him. The Cognitive Skill Index (CSI) indicates a score for basic intelligence and includes testing on analogies, memorizing picture pairs, verbal reasoning, and sequencing. The average scores here are between 95-105. Perhaps the scores are not as bad as you think  ... Continue to read Dr. Sandhu's answer on Discrepancy in Terra Nova Scores and Presumed Ability here.


Getting Thru to Kids: Problem Solving With Children Ages 6 to 18
By Phillip Mountrose

Discover the source of problems and how to resolve them through a guide that teaches parents how to effectively interact with kids ages 6-18. Both kids and adults are provided with tips on how to improve listening skills and change set behavior patterns: chapters provide many powerful clues to handling common problems on all sides.

This easy-to-read book gives you a 5-step process to resolve problems with children. It takes you systematic through the process on how to shift negative emotions to positive ones, and how to transform limiting beliefs to empowering ones. It works well to promote trust, honesty, school attitude, friendship and self-esteem.


Parents Do Make a Difference: How to Raise Kids with Solid Character, Strong Minds, and Caring Hearts
By Michele Borba D and Michele Borba

Once you open the book, though, it's just as clear that, marketing aside, the book was not actually written as part of the parents vs. peers debate, which it has absolutely nothing to do with. Nor is it a scholarly work, in the vein of Harris's book.

The original title of this book was probably something like "The Eight Skills of Raising Successful Children." These simple skills, which Borba (author of 36 other educational publications) has researched and workshopped across the country, then implemented in the curriculum of three elementary schools, are commonsensical, feel-good affirmations for parents and kids. Borba uses many lists: the aforementioned eight skills, "four steps to developing positive self-beliefs," "four steps to enhancing social competence," and so on.



Activity is the key to toddlers' mental growth
Sunday Herald Mar 16, 2009

Published as part of the Growing Up in Scotland (GUS) series, the study is the latest in an ongoing project commissioned by the Scottish government to track 8000 young Scots born between June 2002 and May 2005 from infancy into adolescence.

Music lessons provide a workout for the brain
New Scientist Mar 13, 2009

Scans of the brains of child musicians before and after musical training have yielded compelling evidence that proficiency and skill relies on hard graft, not innate genius. Earlier studies have shown that adult musicians have different brains to adult non-musicians. But the latest results settle arguments about whether the brain differences were there from birth, or developed through practice.

Iodine Deficiency - a Concern in Pregnancy
Suit 101 Mar 15, 2009

Iodine deficiency is a major health concern. The most vulnerable time for iodine deficiency is during pregnancy and lactation, and childhood. Unfortunately, worldwide these population groups are showing signs of potential iodine deficiency.

TV watching doesn't fast-track baby's skills
The Sunday Times Mar 15, 2009

The next time you pass by a shelf full of videos claiming to be educationally stimulating for babies, you might want to think twice before pulling out your wallet. A new study suggests that watching television will not improve a baby's language or cognitive skills, even if they watch several hours a day.

Can Your Child Read?
Women Life Mar 15, 2009

Like most parents all over the world, your initial impression may be one of skepticism. But what many don't understand is to teach their baby reading successfully is not only feasible, it is highly likely - in fact, teaching your baby reading is much faster earlier in life than later, as her cognitive development is strongest in her first three years of life.

The Benefits of Reading
Bukisa Mar 12, 2009

We are all--adults and children--into having the newest gadgets. Whether it is cell phones for adults, or Nintendo games for children, we have the urge to catch up with technology. However, the simple act of reading a book can bring as much stimulation as electric gadgets. Start the reading early to help them with their brain development, which can also be a simple pleasure for you.

Success at School - Learn to Learn
Meta Cafe Mar 14, 2009

Fascinating recent discoveries about the brain and how people learn, have led to the recognition that each student has a way of learning which suits those best - a preferred learning style.


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