Chinese, Americans Truly See Differently, Study Says
Richard Nisbett, a psychologist at the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor.
Westerners and Easterners see the world differently
Cheung notes that children in China consistently score higher on academic tests compared to children in the U.S. and Mexico. But she says more research is needed to determine how much of that is due to the storybooks or even to the larger differences in cultural values that the books reflect. Other completely unrelated factors, such as different teaching techniques could be at work.
In the meantime, Cheung says her study suggests all three cultures might have something to learn from each other.
For instance American parents might want to take a cue from Chinese storybooks and supplement their children’s reading with more tales that promote a view of intelligence as changeable.
After all, says Cheung, if you think intelligence is gained through effort, then when you’re confronted with a challenge or even an outright failure, “you just put more effort into it. You try to learn from the experience and you think about different ways of approaching the problem rather than saying, ‘No, I’m just not smart and I’m just going to give up right away.'”