Laughter Helps Toddlers Learn Better
Research suggests jokey explanations will help little ones laugh, which will help them learn.
There's nothing quite as infectious as a toddler's laugh, and BPS reports that new research shows how moments of the giggles are an opportune time for tots to learn.
Rana Esseily headed up a study where her colleagues split 53 18-month-olds into two groups to see if laughter would help the little ones learn how to reach a toy duck with a cardboard rake. One group (comprised of 16 toddlers) was given a straight explanation as to how the wee ones could reach the duck with the rake. The other group was given a more humorous demonstration where 16 of the 37 toddlers laughed at the experimenter's jokey show of how to get the duck with a rake. The researchers then set the stage for the toddlers to mimic what the experimenters had just showed them.
Of the toddlers that laughed, all but one used the rake to get the duck. While only 19 percent of the remaining toddlers in the jokey explanation group managed to mimic the experimenter and use the rake to grab the duck. In comparison, just 25 percent of the toddlers in the non-jokey explanation group managed to figure out they were supposed to use the rake to grab the duck.
The researchers concluded in their paper:
"Our results suggest that laughing might be a stimulant of learning even during the second year of life.”
They suggest that it may not be the laughter that helps, but rather a positive emotion to associate with the event that allows them to learn.
It's often wondered when children begin to learn. Diane Ravitch, a research professor of education at New York University, says that the first five years of life — before they even enter a classroom — are crucial to education and setting attitudes for kids.
What can 3D printing do for medicine? The "sky is the limit," says Northwell Health researcher Dr. Todd Goldstein.
- Medical professionals are currently using 3D printers to create prosthetics and patient-specific organ models that doctors can use to prepare for surgery.
- Eventually, scientists hope to print patient-specific organs that can be transplanted safely into the human body.
- Northwell Health, New York State's largest health care provider, is pioneering 3D printing in medicine in three key ways.
- In some fundamental ways, humans haven't changed all that much since the days when we were sitting around communal fires, telling tales.
- Although we don't always recognize them as such, stories, symbols, and rituals still have tremendous, primal power to move us and shape our lives.
- This is no less true in the workplace than it is in our personal lives.
One of Stephen Hawking's predictions seems to have been borne out in a man-made "black hole".
- Stephen Hawking predicted virtual particles splitting in two from the gravitational pull of black holes.
- Black holes, he also said, would eventually evaporate due to the absorption of negatively charged virtual particles.
- A scientist has built a black hole analogue based on sound instead of light.
- The word "creative" is sometimes waved around like a badge of honor. We speak of creativity in hushed tones, as the special province of the "talented". In reality, the creative process is messy, open, and vulnerable.
- For this reason, creativity is often at its best in a group setting like brainstorming. But in order to work, the group creative process needs to be led by someone who understands it.
- This sense of deep trust—that no idea is too silly, that every creative impulse is worth voicing and considering—is essential to producing great work.
SMARTER FASTER trademarks owned by The Big Think, Inc. All rights reserved.