Did you know ........ After eight months a child exposed to a nurturing and stimulating environment may already have 1,000 trillion connections created?
It is primarily the experiences a child has that physically wires and grows the brain. Genetics certainly had a great impact, but the environment and relationships a child experiences has a dramatic impact on the way a brain creates connections between brain cells.
As a child is provided with opportunities to interact with people and their environment, the critically important connections that wire the brain for learning, relationships and well-being in life are being created.
Growing a Brain
Infants and young children have brains that are far from being fully developed. The brain has approximately 100 billion brain cells. For the brain to physically grow and function well the brain cells need to be connected with each other. Nine months during pregnancy isn’t enough time to connect 100 billion brain cells!
So, the preschool years are a time when a great amount of needed connections continue to be made. Adults who provide warm and consistent responses, who cuddle and read, talk to their children, provide fun play experiences, establish routines, and ensure children get healthy nutrition and plenty of sleep…. are contributing to the healthiest brain connections for children.
It is often refreshing for many parents to realize that beyond meeting a child’s basic physical and safety needs ….. all that a developing brain needs most is loving interaction and lots of opportunities to play.
It is so easy to provide these positive experiences in everyday life to stimulate a young child’s brain growth...
Activity Idea From an Infant:
What Do I Like?
Notice what I like and respond to. Try to tune into the level of activity I seem to need. If I seem active, do a more playful activity. When I want to be calm, read a story or sing a lullaby to me.
Brain Insight: My brain is not developed enough to adjust to different activity levels easily on my own. I really need you to match your behavior to my needs.
(From the: Love Your Baby, Brain Development Activity Packet)
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The genuine intent of Brain Insights is to provide information in numerous ways toward the goal of having ALL adults realize that healthy brain development especially in the early years, impacts the well-being of children. families and our communities. This understanding provides the realization that we all have the wonderful and very real opportunity to make a very positive impact.