Researchers have found concrete links between proficiency with tools and improving language skills, but how can we use this new information?
One of the most difficult aspects to learning a language is developing the ability to understand and interpret complex sentences. In 2019, researchers unearthed a correlation between being proficient with tools and having above average syntax skills.
Now, new research from a Franco-Swedish collaboration has finally explained why.
So How Does Being Good with Tools Help Language Skills?
To massively simplify the answer (our sincerest apologies to the research team), it seems that both skills rely on the same region of the brain and similar neurological resources to operate effectively. Once this link was known, the question was posed that if they use the same area of the brain and the same resources, can training one result in improvements in the other?
The result was a resounding yes!
Research subjects were asked to complete a comprehension task before and after 30 minutes of motor skill training with a pliers (think “Operation” but a bit more complex). The results showed clear evidence that the motor skill work led to an improvement in language performance.
What Does This Mean For Learning in the Future?
The answer to this remains very much up in the air. Researchers are still considering the best ways to utilise this groundbreaking discovery. There are obvious huge implications for the field of occupational therapy and rehabilitation. Patients with impaired language skills or language development disorders could potentially improve their situations through motor skill training.
The work could also provide excellent insights into how language developed amongst our ancestors. Paper author Claudio Brozzoli explained that “when our ancestors began to develop and use tools, this proficiency profoundly changed the brain and imposed cognitive demands that may have led to the emergence of certain functions such as syntax.”
This research has the potential to unlock so much more knowledge beyond its scope already, and here at PartyLab Industries we’re very much looking forward to following it
You can access the full journal article here if you want to learn more.
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