A child’s brain is a wondrous thing. In fact the complexity and intelligence of a child’s brain is beyond scientific understanding. Babies, crawlers, toddlers, and young children are sponges. They absorb anything – and they are ripe for learning! Neuroscientists have discovered that from when a child is a toddler to when they reach puberty their brain metabolism, as measured by blood sugar consumption, remains consistently very high.
In scientific terms, what happens in the brain is that the synaptic net of axons and dendrites are thick and ready to absorb new experiences. A child’s brain absorbs visual, auditory, sensory and olfactory experiences in an intense and impactful way.
A dramatic example is the ability to learn language before the age of five. And many children are even taught to recognize the shapes and meanings of words before they can speak. Children’s brains can soak up new words in both their native language and in another language they frequently hear.
It is important to remember, however, that learning continues throughout life, and that each child is unique and learns at his or her own pace.
Tips to Improve Your Child’s Brain:
(From The 21 Days To A Happy Child Guide, Ashley Ryan, 2009)
Provide a warm, loving, consistent environment. Children always need to know you love them. And help them build relationships with other people, both children and adults.
Challenge your child with new opportunities, but don’t overdo it! Maintain “age-appropriate stimulation”, don’t try and rush their learning. Give your child the time and freedom to pursue his or her own interests.
Provide a healthy diet. Establishing healthy eating habits in children can have lifelong benefits in avoiding add/adhd behavior, obesity, diabetes, and hypertension. Make sure your child drinks plenty of water.
Avoid disciplining your child with punishments or rewards. Instead encourage your child’s self-reliance and cooperation through communication, respect and patience.
Make sure your child gets enough sleep – 10-13 hours a night is recommended for children.
Stay away from refined sugars, chemical preservatives and meats with hormones, antibiotics and other preservatives. Choose natural and organic foods to feed your child.