What is the meaning of “non cognitive ability” which is often spoken of by early learning specialists?

2016.10.17

Many parents and teachers use test scores and whether a child can study or not as an important factor in determining whether they are smart or not.
However, many teachers have started evaluating students on factors such as curiosity and cooperation, which cannot be measured by testing.
These factors are labeled as “non cognitive ability”.
How can we define these “non cognitive abilities” that are required as working adults?

What is “non cognitive ability”?

“Non cognitive ability” is closely linked to a child’s personality and special characteristics and cannot be measured by tests. Some examples are “drive”, “cooperativeness”, “perseverance”, “endurance”, and “planning ability”.
In technical terms, it is made up of EQ (emotional intelligence), SQ (spiritual intelligence), MQ (moral intelligence) and CQ (cultural intelligence).
These qualities are very important to succeed in life both professionally and personally.

What affect will “non cognitive ability” have on our children’s future?

“Non cognitive ability” plays a very important role in building a foundation for a child’s learning and success in the future. Parents and educators should help children develop their “non cognitive ability” from an early age.

For example, children who are able to cooperative well with others will be able to overcome problems that they cannot solve by themselves by asking for others to help. Inquisitive children are curious and interested in the world around them and will find it easier to get involved in work and social activities around them. Children with drive and creativity will use trial and error to find a way to overcome problems.

How can we, as parents, enhance our child’s “non cognitive ability”?

The best way to enhance your child’s “non cognitive ability” is the encourage him/her to learn how to think for himself/herself. For example, when reading them a book, instead of just reading the words to them, go ahead and ask them questions like “what do you think will happen next?”, or “why do you think the bear is angry”. Asking your child such questions will enhance their language development, imagination and intellectual curiosity.
Also when going outside to play instead of always going to a playground with lots of play equipment it is a good idea to go to parks with limited play equipment sometimes as well. This will encourage them to come up with their own ideas for having fun rather than relying on the equipment around them.
Also in addition to learning how to think it is important to give your child the opportunity to enhance his/her feelings of self-affirmation. It is important to show your child you love him/her every day and praise him/her whenever you can. If they believe that they themselves are valuable they will gain self-confidence and enhance their strengths.

It is important for children to learn how to be independent while being cooperative from a young age. By allowing your child to have many different experiences and showing him/her your love all along the way, you will help encourage their “non cognitive ability” to develop.

By attending mommy and me classes with your child from as soon as they are born, your child will be in an environment where they can gain self-confidence and cooperation with peers from a young age. Try out a class with your child today.

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