Sunday, May 23, 2010

Is lying proof of intelligence in young children?

A quick-thinking 2-year-old who masters the art of fibbing actually has a fast-developing brain and will probably be successful in adulthood. In fact, the more believable the tall tale, the more quick-witted the child will be down the line – and the better equipped to meet life's challenges. Lying, which requires the brain to manipulate information, is associated with brain regions that permit higher-order thinking. It's also very common: some 20% of 2-year-olds lie, nearly 50% of 3-year-olds lie, and close to 90% of kids lie at age 4. The most deceitful age of all is 12, when almost every kid tells fibs, and by the age of 16, lying starts to decrease. Just 70% of 16-year-olds lie. Parents should not be alarmed if their child fibs since those who have better cognitive development lie better because they can cover up their tracks.

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