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Can simple games make kids better at math?

E-School News – Laura Devaney

“Kindergartners participating in a Johns Hopkins study demonstrated increased math performance after exercising their intuitive number sense with a computer game. “Math ability is not static—it’s not the case that if you’re bad at math, you’re bad at it the rest of your life. It’s not only changeable, it can be changeable in a very short period of time,” said Jinjing “Jenny” Wang, a graduate student in the Krieger School of Arts and Science’s Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences. “We used a five-minute game to change kids’ math performance.” Humans and animals are born with an intuitive sense of quantities and can demonstrate this knowledge as infants, researchers said. For instance, when presented with a choice between a plate with a few crackers and another with more of them, even a baby will gravitate to the option with more. This intuition about number is called the ‘approximate number system.'”(more)

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