Went to a izakaya in the neighborhood called ARAKI with Jen and Ted. Small, cozy place run by a family. They had sake, "Dassai" and "Bakurou", and we ordered bunch of stuff, which were all tasty. And they bought me the dinner!
Watched an interesting documentary last night. It was about baby's growth with a focus on its brain. It's fairly common that baby can listen any language up to about age 3, but will lose the capability of telling differences of the sound, for example, L and R between English and Japanese.
They had a case of monitoring the brain function of 1 month old baby with foreign language. The brain showed the reaction to the sound, off course it doesn't mean the baby can understand the language, but is paying attention, recognizing the sound as an important signal. They had a same test with other aged baby, and such function disappears around the age of 1.
Also they had research related to foreign language learning process, how baby from English only speaking family react to Chinese language, conducted by a professor at Washington University. They played the video with a woman speaks Chinese with some toys for 15 min everyday for two weeks, and monitored how much the baby react to Chinese. You would think they'd show some interests or reacts, but the percentage of recognition was almost same as the one with the baby with no such Chinese video lessons at all. Then, they brought in the same woman on the video face to face with the baby, speaking the same language with the same toy just like the video. This case worked a lot better than just playing the video, about 20% of recognition rate went up. It shows interaction is the key to the language learning process.
Neuroscientist says the number of synapse hits its peak between 9th month to 11th month. That's around the age the baby learns the necessary information to live, one of which is language. Also they had the case of mouse test, that the synapses of 3 months old mouse decreased 40% as the day goes by, but 30% of new synapses were created meanwhile. Brain chooses what's vital, and unnecessary parts disappear and replaced with the other vital information.
Baby is born with full capability to fit to the society, gathering information through the interaction. Brain controls the action by will and choice. It's a well designed program, amazing.
Organic store opened in the neighbor today, and they had a offering of free bread of 300. Why not. Went 5 min before the opening, but saw a line of about 50 people waiting in the outside. The power of FREE stuff.