The late Dr. Michael J.A. Howe, professor of cognitive psychology, wrote an enlightening book, Genius Explained (published in 1999), in which he addresses the commonly held belief that genius is born, not made.

Through interesting, little known facts, Dr. Howe shows that nearly all of the people who developed into geniuses benefited during their childhood from a favorable family environment, with many learning opportunities, much intellectual stimulation, and supporting parents taking a close interest in their early education.

For example, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart would have never become such an outstanding musician without the strong stimulation of his father Leopold, a violinist and music teacher. At age six, the young Mozart had already practiced music for as many as 3,500 hours while, at the age of twenty-two, Charles Darwin had devoted several thousand hours to natural history.

And if Albert Einstein became a child prodigy and a very good student, it’s probably because he was brought up in a family of leading edge technologists and entrepreneurs. Einstein himself insisted that, “he had not been born with any special gift.”



Image: Genius Is Made, not Born / ChildUp Early Learning Quote