Baby Learning & Development: A Guide for New Parents!
written by: Sushma
• edited by: Amanda Grove
• updated: 6/19/2014
A baby's learning and development is a very sensitive issue for parents, especially for those who experience parenthood for the first time. Research suggests that development starts soon after the brain is formed in the fetus.
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Learning is the trait that has put human beings on the top of the evolutionary chart! It starts very early in life! Most of the parents are concerned about the learning abilities of their children. So if you are worried about it, then welcome to the club.
Children are born inquisitive. Most expecting mothers have experienced that when their babies are in the womb, they can be receptive to different sounds, or even a change in the mother’s mood. This may indicate that they are listening and learning in their mother’s womb. But is there any scientific proof to back this up? Is there a way this process can be enhanced to get better results? What can parents do to enhance baby learning development? Let’s find out.
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Did You Know That Development Starts Even Before The Baby is Born?
Surprising, isn't it? Baby learning development is simply the process of the brain, connecting sounds and information together, to create thoughts and emotions. Isn't it amazing to know that even before your baby is born, the learning developments start? The baby learning development starts with the fetal brain development, right in the 13-16 week of conception and it can be recorded, too.
Most scientists accept the theory of cognitive development, as proposed by the Swiss psychologist Jean Piaget. Piaget stated that thought and cognitive development consisted of four stages and the first stage starts right at birth. This means fetuses could actually hear and learn as they already have a functioning brain and an auditory system that was partly functioning. This supports the fact that the baby listens and learns right in the womb as he or she matures.
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Can We, the Parents, Help Enhance Development?
Yes, you can! Every parent wants to have an outstanding baby. Learning development is an individualized slow and steady process. However, there are a few tips that parents can attempt, which may enhance the baby’s learning development.
Interaction with the baby is important to increase their learning. It has been observed that parents who communicate with their babies as young as 4 weeks, have more responsive an alert kids. So it appears that regular communication plays a vital role in baby leaning development.
Teach your baby several new things everyday like stacking blocks, picking out the same sizes of blocks, choosing blocks with similar color, etc.
Babies may also be taught how to read early on if you read for them. There are many books designed for infants. Read stories at bedtime, show them picture books and tell stories.
Spend good quality play-time with them. Remember, children learn while playing, and it is an integral part of their learning process. Play some simple games with your baby, and remember: repetition is the key!
Join some play groups for your baby. Babies learn faster when they interact with other babies. This may help in the development of their social behavior.
Expose your baby to different colors, textures, sounds, and shapes.
Teach your baby sign language. Teach them to indicate when they are hungry, to say yes or no.
Babies are very inquisitive. They are mystified with all the things around them, and as soon as they learn to speak a few words, they start asking questions in their own language. They use non-verbal communication to try to speak to parents. Understand their body language like, starring (eye-contact), grabbing, or crying and try to satisfy their curiosity in the way that they can understand.
To encourage development and learning in your baby, you need to be patient. Never force your expectation upon him or her. As every new parent knows, young babies are a hands-on proposition. If you want to enhance your child's learning development you may have to work hard to ensure that it happens.