A child's brain grows faster from birth to age five than at any other point in life. And a child's capacity to learn and thrive in school and life is influenced by early brain development. The quality of a child's early experiences, whether favourable or unpleasant, impacts how their brain grows.
Initial Brain Development
90% of brain development occurs before kindergarten. The average baby's brain is roughly a fifth of the size of an adult's brain at birth. Incredibly, it grows by a factor of two in the first year. By the age of three, it has grown to roughly 80% of adult size, and by the age of five, it has expanded to about full adult size.
The brain is the human body's command centre. Although a newborn infant has all of the brain cells (neurons) that they will have for the rest of their lives, the connections between these cells allow the brain to function. We can move, think, talk, and accomplish almost everything, thanks to our brain connections. These relationships must be made throughout the early years of life.
Every second, at least one million new brain connections (synapses) are formed, more significant than at any previous point in human history.
Different parts of the brain control different skills, such as movement, language, and emotion, growing at different speeds. As connections finally join with one other in more sophisticated ways, brain growth develops on itself. This allows the kid to move, talk, and think in more sophisticated ways due to this.
How the adult brain works differently from the child's brain?
- When children execute word activities, they engage different and more brain regions than adults.
- Regional brain activity changes from childhood to adulthood may represent our brains becoming more efficient as we get older.
- When infants do these activities at levels equivalent to adults, they use a distinct collection of brain areas, i.e., different functional neuroanatomy.
- Even though they completed the same activities with similar skills, brain activity varied amongst persons of various ages.
- Children use more areas of their brains to perform word activities than adults, engaging more regions near the brain's rear. At the same time, children showed reduced activity in several frontal brain areas demonstrated in adult word processing studies.
- While doing the activities, children and adults exhibited remarkably similar levels of activity in specific brain areas. Some portions of the frontal lobe were affected.
Tips to Boost Your Child's Brain Power
These simple suggestions, as well as engaging and supervised activities, will help prepare your kid's young and developing brain for years of learning in the future.
1. Get your infant off to a strong start
Maintain a healthy lifestyle while pregnant, and be aware that certain medications might harm your baby's brain while still in the womb. Many children who were drug-addicted while in the womb have significant learning difficulties and exhibit unprovoked violent behaviour. Cigarette smoking during pregnancy has also been linked to decreased fourth-grade reading performance in studies.
2. Turn up the baby talk.
Respond with joyful vocalizations to newborn coos, and slowly draw out your words in a high-pitched voice while exclaiming phrases like 'beautiful baby.' Parentese is a method of speaking in which exaggerated facial gestures and drawn-out vowels assist your youngster in acquiring all of your language's sounds. Remember that the parts of your brain responsible for comprehending and creating language require a lot of information.
3. Play games using hands.
Patty-cake, peekaboo, this tiny piggy, and even puppets captivate and catch your baby's interest. Using your hands demonstrates how we physically interact with our surroundings to young children – moreover, hands-on activities are simply more enjoyable for both of you!
4. Pay close attention.
When your minor child points, follow her gaze and comment on things or occurrences that she finds attractive. This 'shared attention' demonstrates how significant her perceptions and interests are to you.
5. Instill a love of reading
Choose books with large, vivid illustrations and share your baby's joy through pointing to specific images or even making noises that connect to the book, such as ''glub'' when you see a fish. Modify your voice's tone, simplify or elaborate narrative lines, and encourage children to discuss books. Infancy is the time to focus on your baby's receptive language (understanding spoken words) rather than his expressive language (speaking).
6. Encourage your child to appreciate her own body.
When reading, playing, or even diapering, stroke her tummy and hair. According to studies, newborns who are not frequently touched have smaller brains than their peers their age, and connecting with her up close helps her focus on your words.
7. Select toys that encourage babies to engage and explore.
Toys like a wind-up jack-in-the-box or stacking blocks can help your child understand cause-and-effect relations and 'if-then' logic. If a youngster arranges too many bricks without aligning them, for example, they will tumble down. He 'wires in' the information if he successfully stacks blocks on top of each other.
8. Use healthy discipline.
Create clear consequences for your child without frightening or humiliating them. If your toddler does anything wrong, such as striking another kid, get down to her eye level, adopt a low, serious tone of voice, and repeat the rule firmly. Maintain guidelines that are straightforward, consistent, and appropriate for your child's age. It's absurd to expect a toddling infant not to touch a glass vase on a coffee table, but it's acceptable to ask a toddler not to throw sand outside of the sandbox.
Indeed, a kid's brain works differently than an adult's brain. So it is your duty as a parent to understand and help your child in healthy brain development. When you offer your kid loving, language-rich experiences, you are allowing his brain's neuronal connections and pathways to grow more linked together. As a result, they will develop strong language, thinking, and planning abilities.