Brain researcher Gerald Hüther says children are born with a whole host of potential neural pathways. However, their family and social surroundings influence whether that potential can be realized. Areas of the brain that are not used simply shrivel away.
Language acquisition is also vital to cementing a child's experiences. And enthusiasm plays an important part in the whole learning process, acting as a kind of fertilizer to the brain. It's important that parents and teachers recognize what switches a child on, and help them to develop these interests.