Monday, April 28, 2008

What Do You Think?

I am reading a book that I wish I had read before I had kids. Not that I can't benefit from it now, but I believe it would have been more beneficial for me while raising young children. You know what I mean.

It is not one of those books that tells you how to raise your kids, how to motivate them or even how to potty train them. It is called, "Why Gender Matters" by Leonard Sax. Laurel took an Educational Psychology class last semester and this book was one of the assigned readings and after reading only half of the book I can see why.
It discusses how male and female brains differ and what areas of the brains each use. The areas of the brain involving language and fine motor skills mature about 6 years earlier in gilrs than in boys, and the area in the brain involved with targeting and spatial memory matures about 4 years earlier in boys than girls. A two year old boy is more likely to be able to build a bridge out of blocks than a 2 year old girl. A 3 year old girl will better be able to distinguish facial expressions as well as or better than a 5 year old boy. Girls will mature faster in some areas, where boys will mature faster in other areas. I liked this point as well. By thirty years of age, both females and males have reached full maturity of all areas of the brain. Yea...it all evens out! I love that.

Did you know that girls hear better than boys? If a teacher is speaking firmly with a slightly raised voice, girls say that the teacher is yelling where boys would not even notice a thing. In fact, it can motivate them. Boys need to sit in the front of the class.

How about this one. Boys and girls are divided into groups with a project or assignment. The group of girls will work together to get the assignment finished even if it means asking for help. You get a group of boys together and they start out alright, but when it gets hard they will not ask for help. They start fooling around. This books says that small groups don't work for boys and why.

The book talks about risk, aggression, school, sex, drugs, discipline and more. I think we have all seen the title of the book titled, Men are from Mars and Women are from Venus, and after reading this book you will know why that statement is true. We use different parts of our brains for the exact same thing so why wouldn't males and females come up with a different way of doing things and learning?

It is a softback book that sells for around $15 and good for us all to read, even dads. There is also a second book written by Leonard Sax titled, Boys Adrift, which discusses under achieving young men and unmotivated boys. I think this book will be very interesting as well.

10 comments:

Jan said...

Sounds like a good book. I took a class when I went back to school about communication between the sexes and that was an eye-opener for me, I can tell you!

USAUS said...

I read Brain Sex years ago - follow up with that one Lee Lee... it takes it up to why men and women are so different in their approach and response. It is very fascinating.

Kari said...

I've been looking for another book to read, so this looks interesting. Thanks for the tip!

I think I definately need the one about the boys...

Kari said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Audrey said...

I have been so enthralled in watching our little Carter over the past couple of years and how differently he does everything from my girls. They are wired differently that is for sure!

Susan, Susie, Suz said...

As I see boys being the "squirrel-y" ones in church, I am reminded by one psychologist that stated, "Public school is for girls--not boys." I think quiet church environments would fit it that category, don't you? :)

Kari said...

Any book that helps us recognize how other people think a little differently than ourselves, can only help us communicate better and strengthen relationships with friends and family. (Hmmm...that sentence was a little long.)

Greetings from Venus...

i'm kelly said...

interesting book... i'll have to check into it.

i was fun seeing you guys this weekend. i wish it happened more often!

Dr. G. said...

Great comments. One of my graduate students measured the cortical surface of the brain (by fMRI) and found that female brains have more surface (thats where the nerve cells are) while male brains are larger. hmmmm

Christie said...

I could really use this book for my classes. It will be on my "to read" list.