Our brain is the most complex and most vital organ of our body. Apparently, this organ also matures outside the mother’s womb; a baby is born with an incomplete brain. Thus, as he grows old, every experience during his/her early years will have an immense effect on his life. Parents know that they need to provide their children with a safe place to live and healthy foods to eat. Just as important as these basic needs are the positive intellectual, physical and emotional experiences that child has in his/hear early years of development. Parents, as well as educators during a child’s early childhood have the greatest influence on the child’s brain development and full potential.
Parents can do many things to assist their children become the best they can be. They need to provide their children with healthy and stimulating environment to assist in the development of children’s brain. Below are the tips suggested by Helene Goldnadel in this regard:
Parents and teachers should be warm as well as loving. Children also have senses that allow them to experience and discover what a relationship is. Interactions that are filled with warmth and love can make children feel secured and safe. Touching, for example is a simple gesture that can help stimulate the brain in releasing growth hormones.
Being responsive to a child’s expression, movements and sounds. Infants still cannot speak in order to communicate what they feel. Babies acquire the feeling of safety and security when their parents respond to them accordingly. Babies know that they will be comforted when they cry; will be fed when they are hungry and will be played with when they smile.
Sing, talk and read stories to your child. These things will help encourage language and speech development in children; even if the child still cannot understand what you are saying.
Create rituals and routines that will be reassuring for children. These things will help the child to learn about expectations. For example, when you close the curtains, the child will know that it is time for nap of for sleep. Giving your child predictable and safe interactions will help them perform better in school.
Encourage your child to explore, to be curious and to play. As a baby learns to crawl and to walk, that is also when he/she begins to explore. Parents need to be encouraging as the child becomes curious with the world around him/her. They need to be receptive to the child as he/she returns to once again feel safe after an exploration. Play time is an opportunity for children to explore and learn more.
Parents should carefully select which TV programs the children will watch. Children at a very young age are still in the stage of learning what reality and pretension are. There can be images in television programs that may promote language development but there are also those that will only lead to fright and confusion.
Impose discipline accordingly and use it a chance to teach children. Use discipline to supervise lovingly and consistently so the child will learn what his/her limits are.
Properly communicate to the child what he/she needs to do at that time. Use positive languages in redirecting a child’s attention. Saying no can be done without disregarding love. If you will set a rule for a child to follow. Make sure that you explain your reason for such rules. Be specific and limited in the tasks you are giving to a child. Pay attention to what a child also feels. Let them know how their actions can also affect other people. Encourage your child to also use proper words in expressing and communicating his/her own thought and feelings.