raising intelligent kids Is intelligence something that your child either has or hasn’t at birth – inherited from you? Or is it something you can you give your child through the right upbringing – a nurturing environment, great schooling and so on? The fact that genetics do determine a large part of end-intelligence is beyond doubt; new scientific research though is beginning to prove that genetically blessed or not, there are ways of nurturing your child’s mental development – a shot in the arm as it were; and the results should be indistinguishable from the aggregate you see in children who are blessed with greater natural intelligence. Let’s look at a few of these approaches that scientists recommend as ways to help intelligent children blossom better than they would under normal circumstances. Let’s start at the stage when your child is in your arms and nursing; it makes a big difference how your baby nurses – at the breast or at a bottle full of formula. Everyone knows about the health benefits that breast-feeding brings. However, intelligence doesn’t grow up on formula either. That’s what a European research study says – if your baby is breast-fed for nine months or more, she will be visibly more intelligent than a baby that’s only been breast-fed one month. Parents who sign their kids up for music lessons, usually end up kissing their peace and quiet goodbye for the following five years or so. While that may be true to some degree, here’s what researchers in Canada have to say about their sacrifice – regular music lessons help a growing child with her IQ and also her performance in school; and the longer your child keeps at any instrument that she is comfortable with, the better the effect it can have on her academic performance. In the whole intelligence game, fortune favors the curious. Research finds that the more children get to see curiosity in their parents, the more they seek answers themselves. Try to introduce your child to hobbies, take her out on educational trips, have her help you around when you make stuff in your workshop. And have her read. Of all the approaches to raising more intelligent children that we’ve ever heard of, reading has been the one fixture that’s never been questioned. Sure enough, as a way to promote curiosity and all manner of sensitive thinking, reading as a way that cannot go wrong. Start reading to your children right from day one, leave books around the house all the time, and get your child a library ticket about the age she is ready to toddle out of the house for the first time. Curious children happen to be intelligent children. There is New Age advice keeps telling you how your children need confidence and need to believe in themselves. While less than intelligent interpretations makes confidence out to be some kind of religion, a little gentle and subtle faith in oneself can help the thought process tremendously. So there you go – helping your children make the most of their genetic endowment depends quite a bit on what you can do to help. It isn’t expensive either, or difficult.