Brain Development

Your baby’s brain grows over time. Brain growth starts during pregnancy and continues into adulthood, with the fastest growth happening during the first three years of life. Brain growth is measured by the number of cells and the amount of connections that are between the cells. We can think of those connections as the ‘wiring’ that allows the cells to talk to one another. This wiring plays a really important role in how your baby grows and learns, both today and later in life.

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Is there anything you can do to help the wiring in your baby’s brain get stronger and healthier? In a word, YES! And the best part is: it doesn’t take special equipment, fancy toys or complicated treatments and everyone can help. Talk with your baby early and often. The words she hears from you and the rest of the people around her help her brain make new connections and make those connections stronger.

And the stronger the wiring in her brain becomes in the first three years of life, the more ready her brain will be to learn all the wonderful things she is going learn and do later in life. So shower her with lots of loving words. The wiring in her brain gets stronger and healthier every time you do.

 

References:

National Scientific Council on the Developing Child (2007). The timing and quality of early experiences combine to shape brain architecture: Working paper no.5. Retrieved from www.developingchild.harvard.edu

National Research Council & Institute of Medicine. (2000). From neurons to neighborhoods: the science of early childhood development (J. P. Shonkoff & D. A. Phillips Eds.). Washington, D.C.: National Academies Press.

Additional Resources:

Baby Brain Map: http://www.zerotothree.org/child-development/brain-development/baby-brain-map.html

Talk With Me Baby is made possible by a grant from the United Way of Atlanta and is a collaborative effort among organizations.