A lot of people think that, “Mad Minute/one-minute tests” are just tedious, but a study shows that they are actually helping you. According to Stanford scientists, these tests will eventually help you become a math wiz! They have proven this study by looking inside the minds of elementary school students, adolescents, and adults.
This study shows that most kids stop using their fingers to count with and actually try to use the stuff that they memorized at age 8-9. Some kids are already good at adding, subtracting, multiplying, and adding numbers, and those kids become smarter than other when they grow up.
Scientists put together 28 students ages 7-9 to find out why some kids can memorize faster than others. Each student was put in a simple MRI scanning machine; with a screen that projected simple math equations. All the kids had to press a button to see which answer was right or wrong. The scientists recorded their activity even before they pressed a button.
After the MRI scans it showed that the older the kids were the faster their brain was and their accuracy. The scientists saw that there was less activity going on in the prefrontal and parietal area of the brain, than the hippocampus.
The scientists were confused because the hippocampus is the area for long-term storage and not short-term storage.
According to Dr.Menon, the kids with the fastest results were the kids with the healthiest hippocampi.
The scientists than selected 20 adolescents and 20 adults and put them through the same tests. This time there was no reaction from the hippocampus or the prefrontal or parietal area of the brain. They got the answers almost instantly. They know now that they adults and adolescents got the answers almost right away because they have practiced the basic math enough times to memorize it, and it took them very little effort.
Dr. Kathy Mann Koepe believes that if people can mentally do simple math equations then it is harder for these people to do harder equations. Basically they have not memorized the concept of the harder math equations.
Dr. Menon plans to help kids with mental disabilities with their math by giving them one-minute tests, and so scientist can find new ways to help kids with this subject.