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STUDY: Elementary School Girls Think Boys are Smarter

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Gender stereotypes start in elementary school, a study published today in Science suggests. Though five-year-olds don’t discriminate between genders when deciding whether or not a person is brilliant, six- and seven-year-olds overwhelmingly think men are inherently smarter than women. At the same time, the children included in the study also believed that girls receive better grades in school.The reinforcement of these ideas could lead women to be less ambitious than men once it’s time to choose a career, the study claims.

In one part of the study, five-year-olds were told a story about “a really, really smart person” and then asked to guess who the person was, based on two photos. One photo showed a woman, and the other showed a man. Aside from the gender, the pictures were nearly identical, and the five-year-olds generally identified their own gender. But six- and seven year-old girls answering the same question were “significantly less likely” to chose the female photo, reports Bloomberg.

Another section of the study introduced children to two board games: one for kids who are “really, really smart” and another for kids who try “really, really hard.” Both five-year-old boys and girls were interested in playing the game for smart kids; but while the older boys continued to want to play that game, older girls preferred the game for people who tried hard.

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Study: Napping helps babies retain knowledge

Taking naps after learning new information may help increase a baby’s memory, a new study suggests.
The study, published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, is based on tests of six- and 12-month-old babies to see how they retained memories, using a puppet with a removable mitten attached to a bell. Researchers repeated a sequence of actions using the contraption, several times, before the infants took naps of varying lengths.
Those who took naps that lasted longer than 30 minutes were more likely to remember how the device worked than babies who napped for only short periods after the lesson, the New York Times reported. Sleeping has long been tied to improving memory among humans. A recent study by researchers in Montreal found that children who get a good night’s sleep perform better in math and languages. So it makes sense that the benefits of sleep would also help infants.
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Photo credit: demandaj / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND

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Study: Babies respond more to moms than dads, but you can fix that dads

New research indicates that babies learn language more from their moms than their dads, and that moms react and respond more to a baby’s cues than dads.
A report in the journal Pediatrics analyzed a group of 33 babies monitored with a small recording device called LENA attached to a vest researchers wore on them just after they were born, while in the hospital and again at 44 weeks and 7-months old.  With over 3,000 hours of recordings, the researchers found that “when babies made sounds, moms were more likely to respond to them verbally than fathers were — “Oooo, sweetie pie, you’re talking this morning, ” Time  summarized.
The report also discovered that mothers responded 88% to 94% of the time to the babies vocalizations, while dads responded only 27% to 33% of the time.

As a result, and  perhaps because the babies were used to hearing their mom talk to them more, both boys and girls were also more likely to respond to their mothers’ or female voices than they were to male voices.

Dang dads, even strange random women beat your voice!
But you dads can change all that, the study suggest, by simply talking to your babies more and perhaps doing so in a higher pitched sing song-y way that moms do and pairing your talking with eye contacts as moms tend to do.
Give it a try and report back, kay? 

Good luck!

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