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Baby geniuses are terms used to describe children whose intelligence quotient is high enough and even exceeds that one for any adult. At early ages, children dislike new learning tools and subjects that are difficult to grasp. Forcing a child to understand something difficult can lead to frustrations and confusion. Normal children who are forced to learn something quickly can even develop total dislike and negative attitudes towards the topic at hand. For example, common subject that many children do not have a passion with is mathematics. This subject requires more time and keen attention during its teaching and learning.
Baby geniuses are children with more capabilities to withstand pressure and dig for more knowledge than others. Their success cannot be measured with that of any adult across the world. Many children work on integers at early ages in their young classes without actually knowing what is going on in class. Many teachers have come to give the children what they want to know; which is to learn something new every new day of their school lives. Addition, subtraction, division and multiplication of whole numbers are what many kids are taught in class. One weird thing that happens is that kids are not allowed to think alone; to think about negative numbers.
In many schools, children find good company with their teachers just because they help in solving several mathematical problems. Baby geniuses do not think along these lines, but rather they prefer doing everything on their own. Baby geniuses will always write on almost any available space in the room. In a way, this new generation of kids is just careless of their results. Many people call them kids of the 21st century because they just need few tools and they will find solutions to almost any mathematical problem around the world.
Past studies show that children as young as six years have the capability of dealing with negative numbers. Some even perform various basic calculations using negative numbers. Other scholars who had a passion of knowing that which constitute a kid of 21st century carried out a quest for geniuses. A first grade teacher selected some students with wide understanding of mathematics from the class. The teacher, however, did not introduce the idea of negative numbers to this group of students. Within a forty-minute session, seven students performed several activities, which included solving of problems. These activities aimed at bringing out the thinking capacities for these seven first graders. Children selected elicited different thinking about negative numbers during the forty minutes duration (Bishop et al., 2011).
Using the same seven students selected, researchers carried out the individual tests. The scholars subjected students to identical basic tasks and follow up questions. The researchers based responses on each individual child. The use of these questions aimed at uncovering each child’s ability and thinking. All the responses differed considerably even though questions and tasks used had the same content. Problem solving interview constituted of a number line game described by one famous author (Prensky, M. 2001). This game enabled children to draw only two 2x3 inch cards each. The cards perform two functions. An action card labeled with a minus or a plus sign showed the direction on the number line while the other card a magnitude card show how far to move.
The researchers created a number line starting from zero and extending all the way to the right with positive integers. The number however possessed unlabeled tick marks to the left side of zero. Each child and an interviewer played this game in turns; however, the interviewer played thrice after a child landed to the side marked zero. The researchers chose this game for two basic reasons. First, they wanted to help students understand that addition and subtraction are movements forward and backwards respectively. Second, the scholars wanted to expose learners about numbers existing to the left of zero.
After these games were over, the children were able to see results on a table. Children found these results to be new and had not seen any of them before. To the children, the results did not make any sense at all because they made subtraction and addition different from the normal interpretation. This operation 4 + %u25A1 = 3 seemed inconsistent to the children. The researchers wanted to check the reactions of the students when faced with such counteractive situations. Five out of seven children named places left of zero in the correct manner. They named them accurately as negative numbers based on their magnitude. Even though, some children did not use explicit negatives, they used some other notation, which enabled them to perform adequate comparison.
The two children who did not distinguish numerically unique places to the left of zero did saw places of locations. These two children gave these places names like no numbers, none, the negative classroom, the negative principals’ office, and the negative cafeteria. In this whole research, children elicited three types of thinking when prompted with counter-intuitive problems. First, solving problems of this kind is impossible. Initially, children made comments such as “That does not make sense at all.” After a while, half of these chosen children changed their stance and perceived intuitive problems to be having solutions.
Secondly, counting back strategies only extend to negative numbers. Some children in this research had the same problems but eventually found ways of drawing alternative models that aid in solving counterintuitive problems. Thirdly, children portrayed another thinking related to motion on the number line and negative numbers. They viewed that whenever motion was made on the number line there was movement towards the negative numbers. They understood negative numbers to be sequential.
The researchers found out eventually that six and seven year olds were ready to grapple with all negative numbers. The kids displayed a wide range of understanding even though it varied from one child to another throughout the whole interview period. In addition, the research found out two vivid ways of reasoning about numbers. These two ways affected general understanding of children and how they made sense about negative numbers. First, the children viewed numbers as a location or position in relation to other existing numbers. Second, they viewed numbers as tangible quantities, objects or amounts. From the way first graders differed in their approaches to counterintuitive problems, they bring out the distinctions of varying reasoning levels.
Baby geniuses in this century have a peculiar way of thinking towards probability. Another research done in University of Western Sydney, Australia comprised of seventy four children with a quest to find out development of children notions towards probability. Probability is one field of mathematics where adults venture into. The study sought to find out intuitive understanding of some probability concepts by children. This study generated two powerful research questions embedded on strategies that children use in making judgment upon different probability tasks.
The team subjected children to five tasks in the form of games using random generators of various kinds. Individual children would play this game with a researcher. Researchers asked children who participated to make choices and decisions towards probability. They further requested the children to explain their reasons. They used both numerical and spatial random generators. Numerical generators comprised of discrete items with up to four colors.
On the other hand, spinners with four colors made up spatial generators. The researchers varied ratios of the colors present during the tasks. The researchers expected children to make clear comparisons using sample space. For example, children would report colors that most likely occurred in the tasks and so on. Between the sample spaces, the researchers wanted children to provide colors for different spinners used in the task. A complete task included examining a relationship between a spatial random generator and numerical random generator. Questions that the interviewers asked the interviewees included equal likelihood, randomness, sample space, order of likelihood, certainty and impossibility and proportions.
The researchers gathered varied responses from individual children and later grouped them into several listed headings. Finally, the researchers grouped common characteristics together so that they could prepare findings. From this study, the researchers found out that children’s understanding of development concepts varied with age. The concepts of most/least likely, more/less likely and also equal likelihood are easily understood compared to impossibility and certainty concepts. These two immediate extremes thus proved to require an introduction to teaching during later stages in a child’s life in school.
Even though, children under the age of six years possess varying levels of intuitive probability still these levels are unstable. Children at this age depend more on their visual data and use of hidden sample spaces may not be productive in all their activities. The study also continued to note that nine year old children have the capability to respond more to instructions which assist them in developing uncomplicated numerical strategies. Children at this age can use such strategies in thinking proportionally. Basic probability concepts are more useful to children at the age of nine. Finally, the researchers found out that, children showed substantial variations in their strategies. Degree of implementation and inventiveness varied in children because of great variations (Way, n.d.).
These two case scenarios involving mathematics genuinely acknowledge that many geniuses are available in this century compared to other centuries. From this later case, the researchers evaluated children to determine probabilistic reasoning and thinking. It is now apparent that babies’ cognitive development is rapid. Curriculum designers are now faced with more problems of thinking of what children learn in class from another perspective. One year for children actually means a lot to them and they need adequate teaching aids and learning schedules that level up with their thinking. The growing body of knowledge is quite different from those golden ages, when children used to live on a curriculum at least for half a decade.
As with the study on negative numbers, children are seen to be more active at early ages of six. In the past, this was extremely different because, at those ages, some parents did not have time to think about their children and school. Mathematical teachers are now faced with more challenges of assessing their students at early ages so that they can measure their abilities. Interactive sessions will define the type of teaching to be adopted a class of mathematics with young students. Children of the 21st century seem to be problem solvers; they just need tools and correct support. Baby geniuses cannot expressly talk about their challenges as other children do. It is the task of the teachers to be extremely keen so that they provide necessary resources required by the child. Complete reassessment of young students may reveal yet another group of geniuses in other fields apart from mathematics alone.
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