Religious children are meaner than their secular counterparts, study finds

Children from religious families are less kind and more punitive than those from non-religious households, according to a new study. Academics from seven universities across the world studied Christian, Muslim and non-religious children to test the relationship between religion and morality. They found that religious belief is a negative influence on children’s altruism. “Overall, our…

Brain food for growing minds

In South Africa, most of the adults who spend time with children in their various capacities as parents, teachers, care­givers, adopters or custodians, do not regularly read aloud to them. And even if they do, with repeated readings of favourite storybooks, most can’t sustain the activity long enough for it to become a habit. This…

Shyness is not a disease

The drugging of our children has reached ridiculous proportions over the past century. We label our kids as having ADHD because they can’t sit still and dose them with Ritalin. We label our kids as depressed because they experience normal human emotions like sadness and grief, and pop them on anti-depressants. And now we’ve even…

Teaching tolerance

Nelson Mandela once said: “No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.” So…

Untamed

I have been teaching creativity to young children for the last two years. It has been an interesting journey not only into the inner worlds of these small folk but into the psyche of humans in general. The more we change the more we stay the same. We are tamed by society but that madly…

Music lessons in early childhood may improve brain’s performance

Music lessons in early childhood lead to changes in the brain that could improve its performance far into adulthood, researchers say. Brain scans of young adults revealed that those who had formal musical training before the age of seven had thicker brain regions that deal with hearing and self-awareness. The findings highlight how brain development…