Researchers have known for some time that the brain is like a muscle; that the more you use it, the more it grows. They’ve found that neural connections form and deepen most when we make mistakes doing difficult tasks rather than repeatedly having success with easy ones.
What this means is that our intelligence is not fixed, and the best way that we can grow our intelligence is to embrace tasks where we might struggle and fail.
After all, when my son, or for that matter, anyone else asks me about learning, I only want them to know one thing. As long as they embrace struggle and mistakes, they can learn anything.
Anyone who thinks they’re “not a math person” or “just don’t understand chemistry” should read this. You’ve been duped. The struggle is the point. I’m so grateful everyday that I went to both a high school and college that embraced critical thinking and challenged me more than reaffirming.