Today’s Wonder of the Day was inspired by Andre. Andre Wonders, “What is a good brain teaser” Thanks for WONDERing with us, Andre!
We were fishing at the Wonderopolis pond the other day and saw some ducks. There were two ducks in front of a duck, two ducks behind a duck, and one duck in the middle. How many ducks did we see? If there were two ducks in front of and behind one in the middle, you might answer five. However, there were actually only three ducks. It all depends upon how you look at them.
Do you enjoy riddles like the one above? How about cryptograms? Crosswords? Sudoku? Math problems? Optical illusions? Logic puzzles? These are all examples of what have come to be known as brain teasers.
According to the Cambridge Dictionary, a brain teaser is "a problem for which it is hard to find the answer, especially one which people enjoy trying to solve as a game." There are many different types of brain teasers. Many people enjoy brain teasers because they require you to use logic or creatively think "outside the box."
Brain teasers have a long history. Researchers believe one of the earliest fans of brain teasers was Greek mathematician Archimedes. Historical records have revealed that he enjoyed making up challenging problems for his peers to solve.
Today, there are thousands of sources of all types of brain teasers. You can find them in newspapers, books, and many different websites.
Some experts believe that working through brain teasers on a regular basis can improve memory and other mental functions. They see brain teasers as exercise for the brain like physical exercise improves physical health.
How effective brain teasers are at improving mental function remains a hotly debated topic among psychologists. However, there is research to support the idea that older adults should spend some time on brain teasers every week. Researchers have found recently that solving brain teasers for just two hours each week may help slow the rate of mental decay associated with aging.