Saturday, February 12

How to Stimulate Right Brain Left Brain Thinking in Kids

How to Stimulate Right Brain Left Brain Thinking in Kids

Kids love to talk. And they can talk for astonishingly long periods of time on something as trivial as a hopping bird or a shiny, smooth pebble. Sometimes they come up with incredible observations and thought-provokers that may never occur to an adult mind.

left brain right brain thinking in kids
Photograph Lizbeth Moreira




















Ever wondered why the spiny bones of a fish do not pierce its body while it easily pokes our fingertips? It's because fish move side to side just as it starts to poke them. Or wondered why the moon sometimes races across the sky through the clouds in a hurry? That's because there are people perched on tall trees trying to make a grab for it. Indeed the imagination of a little child is an amazing wonderhouse of unlimited creativity and beauty.

But as all good things usually do, this lovely phase also comes to an end. They are trained to think more practically and are coerced into a left brain mode of thought and action. For some reason, the left brain mode of thinking has come to be accepted as the norm and the accepted standard. 


Left Brain Users


The left brain is the home of logic, rational thinking, and objective, analytical views. Kids with left brain mode of thinking do well in the science subjects and math. They keep their stuff neat and tidy and are more likely to make proper use of designated furniture when they read or eat. They are usually good at taking in directions and following them to the letter. They are the people with plans A, B, and C whether it's a football game or playing with Lego.


To encourage right brain activity


Parents of left brain oriented kids could try to encourage them to think more outside the box. They need to be introduced to new activities for it's almost certain that they would never go looking for it on their own. They need to be encouraged to chill, relax, and stop worrying about perfectionism. You can stimulate right brain activity in them by getting them to take up  arts, sports, craft, and music.

Right brain thinking is best stimulated by meditation exercises. During meditation, the left half of the brain is calmed down and relaxed. When the left brain is at rest, the right brain gets a chance to become more active. Teaching your child meditation techniques suitable for her age is a great way to help her access both sides of her brain in a balanced manner. 


Right Brain Users 

The right brain, on the other hand, is intuitive, creative, takes in the big picture, and is subjective. Consequently, right brain thinkers often tend to question handed down notions and are more likely to think outside the box. This could lead to what society considers disruptive attitudes and behaviours and as a result, it is traditionally curbed and coerced into the more acceptable left brain mode.

Right brain users are more likely to be the class clown or wiseguy. They are quick-witted and possess considerable intelligence but often appear to wing it by the skin of their teeth at the last possible moment. They are easily bored by routines and always looking to making things more interesting. Right brain thinkers are always one dream ahead of the rest.

You'll find these kids reading lying upside down on the couch or watching TV from impossible angles rather than seated upright like the left brainers are wont to. You will not have their whole attention when you're talking to them and they appear to be usually "zoned out" or someplace else. Right brain kids also tend to be more emotional, sensitive, and spontaneous.


To encourage left brain activity


Right brain thinking kids need to be encouraged to get more organized and finish what they have started. Often they might not sustain enthusiasm for a task they began with a lot of energy for the simple reason that something more interesting has come along. 

So parents need to train them to focus and finish tasks before embarking on something new. These dreamers may forget important deadlines and instructions, so it might be a good idea to get them to make to-do lists and reminders at an early age. This could prove to be an invaluable habit for right brain thinkers.

To stimulate left brain activity in kids inclined to right brain mode of thinking, you can get them interested in Sudoku, Scrabble, and crossword puzzles. Tempt them with a colorful Rubik's cube


Recognizing the abilities of your child is the first step in giving them the requisite encouragement. Way beyond that is the gratification in being able to understand your child better and tailor your parenting to his or her specific needs whether governed by the right brain or the left brain . 


If you'd like to find out whether you're a predominantly right brain or left brain user, check out the video below. Now you'll know whether you should go for a paint brush or Sudoku. 

4 comments:

  1. Interesting, I've secretly wondered why I couldn't play Sudoku, although I would never admit it to anyone. It's coz I'm a right brained genius. Thanks Liz.

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  2. I can relate to that. However, what gets me down is following directions. I get lost even with a gps :(

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  3. Very informative post, Liz. I've read about this elsewhere, but you explain it well.

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  4. Thanks Betty, I'm glad you liked it.

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