I was reading an interesting research study about how the brain is like a muscle. In order to build stronger muscles, then you must exercise those muscles through a lot of exercise....hard work. In order for the brain to grow, then you must continue to exercise your brain through challenging task and learning more than one way to solve a problem.
In this study, they had 2 groups that did not know how to juggle. Group A never juggled a day in their life. The juggling instructor presented different ways on how to learn how to juggle. They also practiced really hard everyday to learn that skill. The more they practiced learning how to juggle...the more better they got at that skill. At the end of the study, they were good at juggling.
Group B also did not know how to juggle. But, they was encouraged to not to practice. This group did not practice as much as group A. Group B was not provided the different learning strategies on how to master how to juggle. At the end of the study, Group B was still at square 1. They never learned how to juggle since they was not provided the chance to learn different ways to master that skill.
This study was also interesting because they point out how the brain will shrink if you do not put forth the effort on learning new ways to gain knowledge and challenging your mind. The active brain is a growing brain. The muscle also works the same....if you do not exercise your muscles, then it will turn to flab. In other words, do not expect for your intelligence to grow when you are not working hard to put forth the knowledge to learn ways to master that skill.
Ironically, I did not write down the name of the university that conducted that study. It was part of a little Amazon Mechanical Turk project I was reading about this weekend. I just found that study intriguing and wanted to share.