The Brain is amazing…
In the first year of life the brain doubles in size. By the first birthday the brain is two thirds the size of an adult brain. If babies grew in height like this, they could be four feet tall when they were one year old!
The brain is not like any other part of the body. Nearly all the cells of the brain are in place when we are born – about a hundred billion of them. But they are not yet working. The brain grows when connections are made between the cells in response to what is happening to us. These connections are forming all the time all through our lives. What happens to us shapes our brains.
In the first three years of life the brain is growing and changing faster than it ever will again. At times during the first year of life a million connections are forming every single second in your baby’s brain.
So what happens to your baby shapes their brain. And the most important thing that happens to your baby is you! Everything you do when you are with your baby sparks connections in their brain, turning connections into pathways that the child can use again.
five to thrive
Your child’s body grows better when you give the child good food. Your child’s brain grows better when you do five simple things that feed the growing brain:
Respond • Cuddle • Relax • Play • Talk
These are your child’s daily ‘five to thrive’ – the building blocks for a healthy brain. A healthy brain will help your child be happy in themselves, make friends and enjoy their family, as well as being the best start for learning once they go to school. And every day will bring many opportunities to give your baby’s brain what it needs to grow well.
Where to get help?
Things to do at home
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