Education

For every student: Sharpen your mind with these 3 brain teasers

Winter is upon us and studying in the cold can be difficult. When you’re cold, your body shifts from memorising what you are reading about to trying to keep you warm. Of course getting into bed may make you too cosy and hence tired and sleepy. What’s a student to do?

If your room does not have central heating or an air conditioner, pick up a decent heater from the current Shoprite specials  or buy their R99.99 winter boots and wrap yourself up in a thick blanket then play a game or two to get your mind more alert. Research has shown that playing games will boost brain connectivity, making more efficient the regions responsible for memory, sustained and selective attention, visuospatial skills, etc. Which games would best suit this situation you may ask?

Enter brain teasers.

Brain teasers are designed to challenge your mind and to stretch it when you need to be astute. 

There are many of them available on the market, each exercising the left or right side of your brain, or both. Depending on your levels of concentration and of course, levels of fatigue, the kind of game you pick will depend almost entirely on what you are interested in, generally. 

Would it be a mystery game? Spot the difference? Reversing figures, maybe? 

We will give you the three that caught our attention. Seemingly deceptively simple, we might add.  

  1. Pattern recognitionThe empty triangle

You will definitely wake up from your slumber with this game. It will take a while to figure out the pattern, if you are not a maths whizz that is. 

  1. You bury me when I’m alive, you dig me up when I die. What am I?
  1. How many 6’s can you see in this puzzle?

1234467889974674657865876576576 3576573625432657346578436578342 2732188582735827456724687343828 7672878682768723682376783768267 2647648823178346432764876774653 7436574386581483627868653873465

Go on to look for 3’s and 7’s as well, making sure to count them at the same time, but keeping score of each individually. 

A hint from John “If you normally read left to right, try counting finding the numbers scanning right to left… it will increase the accuracy. And, scanning from bottom to top (if you normally read top to bottom) will help you not skip lines.

Brain teasers exercise your brain muscles, increasing cognitive ability and generally sharpening your problem solving skills. They also help eliminate boredom and are a constructive hobby. 

Technology has made access to brain teasers much easier with app creation. We quite liked what Peak and Lumosity had to offer. There are a variety of brain exercising games on there, catering to different tastes and preferences. Try it out and see if you will not be alert and better able to focus on your studies afterwards. 

Photo by Jesse Orrico on Unsplash

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