February 20, 2018
Brain Training for Parents
by Bryan Schubert
Brain training is no longer for baby boomers and the elderly for helping them fight against ageing and memory loss. There is significant research showing that brain training, along with exercise & diet, have significant and positive effects on children, as well. In fact, manufacturers are creating games for children aged 4 until 7 years old.
Brain training has been used as cognitive therapy by adults and children who have dyslexia. There are also studies showing that brain training could help children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), in terms of increasing focus and memory retention.
We all know that kids learn quicker than adults, and in Jean Piaget’s theory on children’s cognitive development, there are four stages of growth: the sensorimotor stage (during infancy), pre-operational stage (toddler and early childhood), concrete operational stage (elementary and early adolescence and formal operational stage (adolescence until adulthood).
In these four stages, infants would learn intellectually based on their physical development. Children as toddlers would show maturation in using language and at the same time, in their memory. Although, it would mean that their way of thinking is done in a non-logical manner. While during the concrete operational stage, children would be manipulating symbols in a logical thought. On their formal operational stage, intelligence is related to the abstract concepts.
By understanding the stages of cognitive development in children, it would give parents an understanding on when to introduce children into exercises that will develop their cognitive skills. Brain training would help children in organizing, logical thought, reasoning, and even executive functions.
According to psychologist Keith Gibson, Ph.D., helping children develop their cognitive skills even before going to school, would help them achieve academic success. In fact, it is important to stimulate the brain since birth. According to Dr. Gibson, it is more essential to teach children processing skills like sound analysis to help them visualize and create auditory associations.
Brain training is significantly different from tutoring. Tutoring children would only help them in reaching specific targets in their academics, while cognitive skills are not fully maximized and developed. While brain training, and brain games, are actually fun for the children.
Parents who have chosen brain training to complement their children’s education and develop their skills are getting positive feedback. Children experienced:
- Greater concentration
- Better skills in analyzing and solving problems
- Getting better grades
- Quicker response to different situations
- Improved self confidence and self-esteem
An improved confidence and self-esteem could actually help children interact with their peers better. Aside from that, they also proved to show better hand-and-eye coordination, that would help them increase their physical mobility whether in sports or other physical activities.
Brain training is a great family activity as well. Not only does it help the children, but the parents get a little brain-boost in the process. Children could get positive reinforcement from their parents for successful training and its effects on their academics. Parents, meanwhile, could also maximize brain training to reduce ageing effects,and improve their overall mental health.
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