Ten Brain Building Activities to Raise Smarter Children - Part II
By Andrew Loh
Here are some more brain building activities that could help your
children better and efficient brains.
Teaching visualization techniques
Children can learn effectively by seeing and doing. Visualization is a process
of seeing or making picture of an object, shape or pattern. This unique skill is special one
because some of the gifted children posses it. However, you can still
teach this skill by facilitating and simulating conditions that favor
Teaching drawing and painting - Drawing,
painting, sculpturing, clay arts are some of the best activities for
developing visualization and imagination. Bring home painting and
drawing materials like paints, brushes, erasers, watercolors, color gels
and others. Take your children to a park and show her or him trees,
animals, water ponds and other objects and ask to draw figures either by
using a color pencil or brush. Give colorized clay materials to make
shapes and patterns. This will help your children develop motor and
imagination skills apart from eye to muscle coordination.
Activities that promote physical well-being
Different exercises promote better learning in children. Children who
are proficient in exercises and physical activities are better in
spatial learning tasks like finding complex escaping techniques through
a maze. All children who exercise on a daily basis have a heightened
mood experience that also enhances learning. Recent research findings
suggest us that exercise boosts higher levels of brain-derived
neurotrophic factor (BDNF), which is so essential for optimal growth of
nerve cells and birth of new ones. They also suggested that the factor
of brain's plasticity increased by enhancing mobilization of the
expression of genes. Another positive aspect of enhanced exercise
regimen is the guaranteed improvement of executive functions that help
in enhancing attention, plan and prevent distractions.
Enhancing critical thinking skills
Six major critical thinking skills could be developed in children by asking
the right type of questions. Learning these skills will also help the children
develop their brain functions. The basic, six critical thinking skills are as
Concrete critical thinking skills -
Abstract critical thinking skills -
Knowledge: Knowledge skills need children remembering or recalling
previously learned information to create either right or wrong answers.
To train your children for knowledge skills, you may want to ask the
right type of questions like what, when, where, how, how many, detect,
identify, elaborate, tell, explain, highlight and recite.
How many apples in a dozen?
How many seats are there in that row?
Tell me the date when the First World War started?
Comprehension: Understanding the real meaning of a topic is
comprehension. When your children understand the real meaning of
information, then he or she will learn the basics of comprehension. To
fine-tune comprehension, you may need to use words and phrases like
estimate, predict, guess, differentiate, and other similar words. With
this skill, your children will be able to translate, dissect, interpret
and extend the available knowledge materials.
Tell me how a seed becomes a plant.
When the First World War
started, who was the President of the United States.
When children apply any previously leaned information to fresh and new
situations, he or she will be developing a critical thinking skill. You
may need to use right phrases like illustrate, demonstrate, show, solve,
examine, segregate, classify, experiment, deliberate and other similar
Analysis: When the available
information is broken down into smaller chunks, your children will be
able to understand the organizational structure of the topic. You should
ask the right type of questions that concentrate on breaking the given
topic into understandable chunks.
Synthesis: When your
children apply previously learnt knowledge and skills to fuse them into
an understandable pattern, and then they will start enhancing those
areas of the brain that synthesize the information. Some of the trigger
words are combine, fuse, gel, rearrange, design, create, invent, find
and other similar words.
Would an apple grow in
a small plant? Now that you know more about apples, what would you say
about those trees that do not give apple fruits? Give some example.
If another World War occurs today, what would the President do and how
would he act to prevent the war from happening.
you children how to judge, evaluate or decide based on some set or
specific criteria without committing any right or wrong answers, then
they would develop those areas that possess skills of making an
evaluation. The right type of trigger words are decide, assess, select,
choose, explain, contrast, compare, summarize, pool and other similar
Apart from these simple brain-building activities, you may also like to
use a number of other such activities to build brain functions. Some of
them are as follows:
Verbal games that improve general brain functions
Guess now: "Guess now and tell me which bird has long
multi-colored feathers and brilliantly colored body?"
Take an inventory: "Yesterday, how many pebbles did you collect?"
Take the odd one out "Mouse, CPU, keyboard and book"
Follow direction and stick to it: "Take one step towards the dining table, turn right,
take four steps to the bathroom and brush your teeth"
Create categories and segregate: "toothbrush, soap, water and then what (your
children will shout bath).
What comes after "eggs or chicken, seed or fruit, seed or flower?"
There are hundreds brain building
activities that you can use to train your children's brain for optimal
performance. You can choose the best one and start using them in your
home by becoming a teacher to your children.
Raise a Smarter Child by Kindergarten: Build a Better Brain and Increase IQ up to 30 Points
By David Perlmutter Ph.D, Carol Colman
Between birth and age five, your child has up to thirty IQ
points at stake. Scientists now know that the human brain is
undergoing a constant and dramatic transformation in the
first years of life. During this peak time of development,
every activity and experience leaves an indelible mark on
your baby's brain, for better or worse. The right kind of
stimulation and nutrition will create connections in the
brain that promote intelligence and raise IQ. The wrong
kinds of activities and foods can stifle intellectual
development, destroy brain cells, and leave your child more
vulnerable to learning or behavior problems down the road.
So, what can you do during the first five years to ensure
that your child is primed to excel?
The good news is that raising a smarter child is easier than
you think. It doesn't require making an investment in
expensive equipment or high priced tutors. It's as simple as
playing the right games, serving the right foods, and
maintaining a brain-enhancing environment in your home by
eliminating common household toxins. In Raise a Smarter
Child by Kindergarten by Dr. David Perlmutter, you'll learn
easy and highly effective strategies that can vastly improve
your child's brain power and reduce his or her chances of
developing ADD and ADHD.