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What is whole-brain stimulation?
You might have heard of people identifying themselves as either left or right-brained. Your left brain controls memory, logic and language skills, while your right brain is responsible for processing spatial information and visual comprehension. Whole-brain stimulation occurs when both the left and right brain are actively engaged, which results in neural synapses from both sides interacting, leading to original ideas and “eureka” moments.
Why is it important to start whole-brain stimulation early?
Studies have shown that mental stimulation in childhood leads to better brain development in later years, particularly in the areas devoted to language and cognitive ability. A 20-year research project concluded in 2012 found that children who were given more cognitive stimulation by their parents from the age of four had better language comprehension and a thinner, i.e. more developed cortex.
You don’t have to wait until your child is a few years old to train her brain though. Babies are aware of their surroundings from birth; their brains are like a sponge and absorb everything they see and feel. Therefore, it is ideal to expose your child to brain stimulation as soon as possible, during infancy and toddlerhood.
Four ways whole-brain stimulation benefits your child
1. Boosts cognitive development
From the moment your child is born, she starts to process the sights and sounds of her environment. Give her a headstart during this critical period with My Little Genius’s Genius Playground course which focuses on cognitive development by stimulating the five senses of sight, hearing, touch, smell and taste. Aimed at one-year-olds, the programme has memory, visualisation, and fine and gross motor skills games to develop the right brain.
These include picture, grid, time-based and linking memory games which involve picture cards, tiles and associating images with their respective terms, with the aim of training memory and improving concentration.
At this young age, your child is unable to articulate her thoughts and feelings properly and this may lead to frustration for both of you. The programme helps to address this issue by teaching you and your child sign language. This includes important keywords to communicate and build understanding.
2. Encourages creativity and imagination
For children aged two, the Genius Immersion course builds on the skill sets of Genius Playground by introducing them to games and activities that enhance creativity, imagination, memory and problem-solving skills. Examples of activities include visualisation, storytelling, singing songs, IQ puzzles, and language and maths games.
The learning doesn’t have to stop when the lesson ends. At home, you can get your child to do simple activities like drawing, craft work, and memory puzzles – all these help to build memory and hone cognitive skills.
3. Engages young minds through science
When the brain doesn’t receive enough stimulation, it becomes blunt and dull. To keep your child’s brain lively and sharp, it is crucial to expose her to new experiences often. Science concepts such as the law governing pressure, electricity and magnetism, as well as colour blending experiments featured in the Genius Explorer course pique your child’s interest and keep her curious and eager to learn. They also provide valuable foundation when she enrols in primary school in a few years’ time.
4. Promotes better memory and learning skills through bilingualism
The programmes by My Little Genius are taught in English and Mandarin, with one language used every alternate week. If you’re concerned that this might stretch your child’s capacity, rest assured. Research has shown that children raised in bilingual environments have better memory and learning skills, such as being able to recall locations and possessing a wider vocabulary. Grammar stimulates the left hemisphere of the brain while intonation and accentuation stimulates the right hemisphere. Teaching in two languages has the additional advantage of imparting the benefits of bilingualism while stimulating your child’s brain.
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A leader in brain stimulation education, My Little Genius has programmes for children aged one to five that offer specially tailored activities for each age group. To find out more about My Little Genius’s whole-brain development programmes, click here.