By Deanna Hurn, Founder and Director of Miracle Math Coaching.
Have your child look at this drawing. Ask what he or she sees.
Is it a duck, facing left with its beak open? Or is it a rabbit, facing right with its ears straight back? There’s no correct answer, because it’s both. The image was printed in a German magazine in 1892, and was later used to show how the brain works.
According to psychologist Joseph Jastrow, a person who can see both images and switch between the two easily is highly creative and a fast thinker. He conducted a study that found the people who saw both a duck and a rabbit were later able to devise five unusual uses for an everyday item; those who only saw the duck or the rabbit could only come up with two uses.
Don’t be alarmed if your child isn’t as creative as you may have thought or hoped according to this test. Through a process called neroplasticity, students’ brains develop as they’re exposed to more creative experiences and given more opportunities to think outside the box.
I wasn’t the most creative child, but I had a depth of creativity for what I was interested in. I’m still that way And your child might be the same – creative in some things and not in others. Celebrate your child and focus on cultivating what they like to do; that’s where the creativity will come from.
The drawing also reminds me of an oxymoron – a figure of speech that include two contradictory concepts. Examples are “jumbo shrimp,” “alone together” and “bitter sweet.” We know what the phrases mean, but the words are exact opposites.
Of course, the duck and the rabbit aren’t opposites. But they do allow us to see one image and then see that it’s a completely different image at the same time. If it’s a duck, we wonder, how can it be a rabbit?
I think you can look at people that way, too. We are made up of many traits, and some of them contradict other traits.
If you have debilitating stage fright, how can you be a superstar performer? Ask Adele, who’s fear of performing has been a challenge in her career. If you’re awful at shooting free throws, how can you be an amazing basketball player? Shaquille “Shaq” O’Neal was one of the best basketball players and worst free-throw shooters in the history of the National Basketball League.
And if your child is really smart, how can he or she struggle in Math?
It can happen for a number of reasons, but as with Adele and Shaq, those challenges can be overcome.
Miracle Math Coaching offers a FREE Learning Discovery Evaluation that helps parents see how their children can be supported to do better in school. Click here to sign up now.
Another great resource for boosting Math ability is Miracle Math’s Brain-Based Math Adventure Camps, check out our summer camps webpage. And call 707-398-3474 to enroll today (press 0 when prompted to find out what spaces are still available. Space is limited to maintain quality. Allow your child to stride into the classroom this fall as a true Math Genius. We’ll make it happen.