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This Is Why Japanese Children Score Higher on Math Tests

In standardized math tests, Japanese children consistently score higher than their American counterparts. Researchers have found that it has more to do with effort than ability. In a study involving first graders, students were given a difficult puzzle to solve. The researchers weren't interested in whether the children could solve the puzzle. They wanted to see how long they would try before giving up.

The American children lasted, on average, 9.47 minutes. The Japanese children lasted 13.93 minutes. In other words, the Japanese children tried 47 percent longer. Is it any wonder that they score higher on standardized math exams? Researchers concluded that the difference in math scores has less to do with intelligence quotient and more to do with persistence quotient. The Japanese first graders tried harder by trying longer.

Possible Preaching Angle:

That study does more than explain the difference in standardized math scores. It doesn't matter whether it's athletics or academics, music or math. There are no shortcuts. There are no cheat codes. If at first you don't succeed, try, try again.

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