The latest groundbreaking discovery from the Beckman Institute enriches our understanding of childhood brain plasticity and suggests that improved math skills are linked to aerobic fitness. The correlation of aerobic fitness and academic performance highlights the importance of regular physical activity during and after school. In a press release, co-author Charles Hillman stated,
These findings arrive at an important time. Physical activity opportunities during the school day are being reduced or eliminated in response to mandates for increased academic time. Given that rates of physical inactivity are rising, there is an increased need to promote physical activity. Schools are the best institutions to implement such health behavior practices, due to the number of children they reach on a daily basis.
These findings provide additional evidence that increased aerobic fitness levels may enhance cognitive function and brain plasticity, with potentially significant outcomes related to a child’s scholastic achievement.
Chaddock-Heyman, Hillman, and Kramer will continue to explore differences in the brains of higher fit and lower fit children during childhood development. They are currently seeking to identify causal relationships between aerobic fitness, changes in the structure and function of the brain, and improved academic performance.
Art Kramer concluded, “An important next step in this research is to establish a causal relationship between brain changes, changes in physical fitness and changes in cognition and school achievement—something we are currently doing with a longitudinal study of children participating in a physical activity training program.”
I also asked Chaddock-Heyman if there were any plans to explore the role that the structure and function of the cerebellum (Latin for little brain) might be playing in the link between physical activity, aerobic fitness, and academic performance. She replied, “It would be interesting for future work to examine how the structure of the cerebellum predicts skills in and out of the classroom, too.”
Our school provides many educational activities to keep your kids engaged. Our activities will challenge and develop your child’s creativity, imagination, thinking skills, and social skills. Games in early childhood is the best foundation for success in school. It develops all necessary learning skills.