Looking Into the Child's Future

Modern science allows to predict the intellectual development of a child

Every mother has a dream to look into her child's future, to find out, which abilities her child has. This dream is becoming real nowadays. Candidate of medical sciences Lyudmila Kuznetsova, doctor of psychoneurology Natalia Makulova, candidate of medical sciences Svetlana Balkanskaya from the Moscow Research Institute of Children's Health talk about the new method to determine intellectual capabilities of a child.

There are a lot of methods to evaluate the human intellect nowadays. What is new about your method?

Special tests to determine the psychological and physical state of health of people of dangerous professions - train conductors, pilots, flight control officers - have been practices for many years. We decided to use the experience and adjust it to children. Our first attempts returned great results. We realized, it was possible to evaluate capabilities of a child without talking to parents or teachers.

What are the peculiar features of your method?

Our method is based on special computer games, not on questionnaires that are so popular now. A child does not even realize that it is a serious scientific research, there is no atmosphere of a test. We use various game situations, which allow us to evaluate the perception, the attention, the memory, the brain activity and a lot of other things - about 30 of them in total. Then the computer analyzes each of them separately with the help of a special program. It is very important to mention, our method gives a possibility to determine the intellectual development of a child, it also predicts, if the potential will be in demand in a child's future. It is an open secret that a lot of people do not know of their talents. Our major goal is to pay parents' attention to concealed capabilities of their children, the unknown sides of their psychology.

A lot of mothers are worried about the following question: what is the factor that determines intellectual capabilities of a child?

It is heredity, first and foremost. The smarter the parents, the more intellectual their children. In addition to it, the level of a child's intellect is more dependant on the intellect of its mother than father. The baby's birth weight is very important for the development of its intellectual capacities too. The mother's  nutrition is very important for a child. Scientists discovered, a baby's brain starts forming long before the birth. That is why, the variety of mother's food influences the intellectual abilities of a baby.

There is a substance, which is vital for the formation of the brain. It is folic acid, which is abundant in mother's milk. New Zealand scientists conducted an experiment with thousands of children of 12 or 13 years old. It turned out, if a mother was breast-feeding her child for more than eight months, the child's intellectual capabilities were a lot better in comparison with other children, who were raised with the artificial nutrition. When someone says that Mozart gave his first concert at the age of three, people usually find nothing surprising about it, they think that Mozart was a genius. It is an open secret, Mozart's father was raising his child very strictly, fanatically trying to make his son become an outstanding figure. Unfortunately, there are opposite examples of that too. The brightest one of them is the story of two girls named Amala and Kamala  - they were found in a cave south-east of Calcutta, India, in the 1920s. The two girls were raised by wolves, doctors did their best to make them become humans again, but they still had wolf's habits, all the work was wasted.

When parents learn of the problems that their child has after your examination, what should they do next?

We give certain recommendations. For example, if a child has problems with the aural perception or the visual perception, the child will have to attend special classes.

Do you have an example, when your method helped someone in particular?

There are a lot of such examples. Parents often want to know if their child is ready to go to school or not. We can find a precise answer to this question. In addition, we try to help parents choose a school. We sometimes recommend special schools for retarded children. At times, parents say that their child has no interest to study, it is hard for him or her to learn how to read and write. Such things then lead to psychological changes of an individual, so it is very important to stop it at the early stage.

What is your attitude to the popular IQ test?

IQ (intelligence quotient) is the most common, but unfortunately, not the most successful way to determine intellectual capabilities. This quotient is not permanent. Specialists are drawn to believe that the IQ test is not very significant.

Vladimir Scherbakov

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Author`s name Olga Savka