Thursday, January 25, 2007

Left and Right Brains

After reading a posting about expressions on faces, I remembered this old topic I studied once in high school. I made it into a competitive speech that made it to state finals.

At the beginning of the speech, I would tell everyone to clasp their hands together (so that your fingers interlock) and note whether: your left thumb rests on top, your right thumb rests on top, or the two thumbs are side by side.

It was really fun to learn about how the two hemispheres control different physical and mental functions. As children we tend to lean rely more heavily on one side versus the other. For example, as toddlers, boys right brains tend to be larger because they develop physical skills earlier while girls develop their left brains earlier as they start talking sooner. This is not always true, however, and is also influenced by a variety of things. Handedness is an influence because each side of the brain controls the *opposite* side of the body. (And so the answer to the above clasping of the hands is that the top thumb indicates which side of the brain is supposed to be more dominant.) As we grow into adults, most will use both sides of the brain equally.

Many of these observations began by observing people with brain damage such as those who suffer a stroke and people who've received surgery for illnesses such as epilepsy or mental illness. Check Wikipedia for more details. I wish I had kept that library book I learned it all from... .

This quiz is not at all me... unless I have an alter-ego that I am unaware of. ;)

You Are 25% Left Brained, 75% Right Brained

The left side of your brain controls verbal ability, attention to detail, and reasoning.
Left brained people are good at communication and persuading others.
If you're left brained, you are likely good at math and logic.
Your left brain prefers dogs, reading, and quiet.

The right side of your brain is all about creativity and flexibility.
Daring and intuitive, right brained people see the world in their unique way.
If you're right brained, you likely have a talent for creative writing and art.
Your right brain prefers day dreaming, philosophy, and sports.

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