Show a chimp a little love and it will ace an IQ test. In fact, it will outperform a baby on tests normally used to test infant development. New research shows that orphaned chimpanzees who received attentive, nurturing care from surrogate moms were smarter than human babies when both groups were compared at the age of 9 months.
The research showed that when chimps were shown affection and played with for four hours on a daily basis, they scored better on tests than chimps who got only standard care (food and health care). They also outperformed babies who were tested at the same age.
The study suggests that human babies can also excel or decline based on the kind of care they are given. Babies will not thrive on food alone—they need some playtime. The lead scientist said, "Early experiences, either of warm, responsive care giving or of extreme deprivation, have a dramatic impact on emotional and cognitive outcomes in both chimpanzees and humans."
How many hours a day do you have time to play with your baby?