Mathematical Infants

Romans 12:1 “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable unto God, which is your reasonable service.”

Does a five-month-old infant know that three is more than two? Impressive new evidence strongly supports the idea that infants have natural mathematical reasoning skills.

Researchers relied on the fact that babies tend to look longer at something new or unexpected than they do at something they have recently seen. Infants were allowed to look at either one or two Mickey Mouse dolls. Then researchers put a screen in front of the dolls. With the babies watching they would sometimes place another doll next to the first or second doll behind the screen. Sometimes another, hidden, researcher would hide one of the dolls. Then the screen was removed.

When the screen was removed, the infant might see the same number of dolls as before, one more, or one less. Researchers found that if the same number of dolls that the infant had seen before were still present when the screen was removed, the infant quickly lost interest. However, if there was an additional doll, or one less doll, the infants spent more time looking at them. They could clearly tell that the number had changed. Other research has shown that infants can also tell when the number of beats on a drum is the same as the number of objects they are being shown.

God has built many skills and talents into us. Other research shows that infants also have language and music abilities at a surprisingly young age. That these intellectual skills are natural to us is another evidence against the evolutionary explanation for man.