Kids Need All the Positive Words They Can Get

By Bart Campolo 07-17-2009

Recently a bunch of people e-mailed me the same New York Times column, which cited a variety of scientific research suggesting that what we think of as intelligence is quite malleable in children and owes little or nothing to genetics. What stuck out to me was one study which found that a child of professionals (disproportionately white) has heard about 30 million words spoken by age 3, while a black child raised on welfare has heard only 10 million words. No wonder low-income children often show brain physiologies similar to adults who have suffered damage in the parts of the brain most critical for problem-solving and creativity. In too many cases, their young minds are literally starving for stimulation. Now here is the good news: According to the scientists, it doesn't have to be that way. If we nurture kids the right way, we can actually make them smart.

What does that have to do with The Walnut Hills Fellowship? Well, since practically everything we do around here is about trying to nurture our kids

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