In the mental growth of a child it's pretty easy to recognize whether he or she is a lateral or linear thinker. That is, if you're aware that there is a definite difference which I venture to submit, most parents and teachers alike do not. While neither thought process is right or wrong, each has it's own pro's and con's. Of course, the largest downfall of the whole subject is when the adults fail to see which way a child leans and instead of teaching toward a kid's strengths, we could be teaching against them. In the long run, it's like trying to teach a left handed child that it's wrong to be that way and try to teach him or her to accomplish everything right handed including writing. Everyone of us have two ways of thinking of reaching a goal. Linear, which is from A to Z (start to goal) or Lateral which is A then possibly B or C or D graduating to Z. The Linear thinker takes his satisfaction from achieving a set goal and sees only one way to achieve it whereas the Lateral person sees the goal but finds more satisfaction in the trip getting there believing that there are many routes to achieve his goal and wants to check them all out whether he actually reaches the objective or not. Now, the downfalls of both would be that if a Linear thinker Is blocked on his way to his objective, it's very hard for him to think of alternatives arrangements. The Lateral will always immediately find alternatives and be happy with them even if he gets lost in the process. I guess it's akin to thinking outside the box versus never leaving the box. Linear won't leave the box even if it means not achieving his goal, and Lateral will leave the box even if it means never finding his way back in. Just for kicks, which way do you seem to travel? And, just for more kicks and giggles, can you adapt to both leanings and can you spot them in others? One more: Do you think our teaching staff should be educated as to the differences or does it seem to matter at all?