Kids don’t all learn at the same pace, or in the same way. Extra tutoring doesn’t always help either, but for some it helps a lot. Why?
Researchers, publishing this week in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, believe the answer is in the brain. By looking at the structures and wiring of children’s brains, they’ve developed a method of predicting who will benefit most from tutoring.
This doesn’t mean, however, that you will be seeing brain scans in every school.
“What we’ve done is much more modest, in terms of trying to understand what are the systems that underlie individual differences in response to math tutoring,” said Vinod Menon, professor at Stanford University School of Medicine and senior author of the study.
The study looked at 24 children in third grade, ages 8 to 9, which is a critical period for gaining basic math skills. Menon’s previous research, published in 2011, found that third-graders demonstrate superior problem-solving abilities compared to second-graders, and that this is also associated with brain changes.
Beedie Savage – President of Quantum Units Education