Helping Children Make Connections – An Essential Life Skill

For the past few days we have been showing video clips from the Vook Mind in the Making by Ellen Galinsky. Here is another fun video clip from Mind in the Making that shows how children make connections, one of Galinsky’s seven essential life skills.

Making connections is at the heart of learning—figuring out what’s the same and what’s different—and making unusual connections is at the core of creativity.

In a world where information is so accessible, it is the people who can see connections who are able to go beyond knowing information to using this information well.

Think about your most recent “aha” moment—when you suddenly understood something that you didn’t understand before. Chances are this “aha” moment involved seeing a new connection.
Making connections involves putting information into categories as well as seeing how one thing can represent or stand for something else. Ultimately, it involves:

· figuring out what’s the same or similar;
· figuring out how one thing relates to another; and
· finding unusual connections, often by being able to inhibit an automatic response, by reflecting, and by selecting something that is connected in a different way.

When playing games like Chutes and Ladders ask the child to say the number of the spaces she lands on, and not just the number on the spinner. so she can learn how the numbers relate to each other.

Judy Deloache of the University of Virginia shows the importance of understanding symbolic representations in the video clip below.

You can purchase your own copy by clicking links below:

Mind in the Making: The Seven Essential Life Skills Every Child Needs


  1. Love the idea of filming along with the text book. Fun.

  2. This book describes fascinating research on child development and learning. It is clear and easy-to-understand. I like the real-life examples and quotes from other parents make it accessible to any reader.

  3. The hardest part for me is that so many of the experiments, research and games overlap. The videos that say Making Connections also can be used in Communication and there is a lot of overlaping.

  4. Interesting topic and video clip.I think it's never to early to start teaching kids many things-but this video clearly shows that certin concepts are a bit complex for a two 1/2 year old, but give it another 6 months and the child at 3 years old, then has the brain connections understand.

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