The priceless benefit of placing your baby in a ‘dynamic environment’ outside their usual home surroundings is the delivery of a significant boost to your child’s development, which can shape a confident, independent and successful child
The responsibility of being a new parent comes with a desire to do the very best for your baby and do everything within your power to help build the mental, physical and social skill base essential to any child.
Your baby is hard-wired to receive stimulation – their brain is ‘switched on’ to receive and absorb information from the first day.
Between conception and the age of three years, a child’s brain experiences enormous changes. During these first three years, synapses (a structure that permits a neuron to pass an electrical or chemical signal to another neuron)form at a faster rate than during any other time of the child’s life.
It’s vital to appreciate that repeated use strengthens your synapses. Those connections which are used infrequently weaken and eventually, are lost forever.
How does this drive your baby’s development? In these first years, the frequency and consistency of stimulation not only determines how much data is absorbed by the brain but also influences how the infant processes information – setting up future learning abilities.
A long-term study conducted by Norwegian researchers showed that neurons in the brains of infants and young children rapidly increase in number (up to 1,000 new connections per second, in fact) and function as your baby learns new skills and becomes more mobile.
Your baby needs the challenge of stimulating experiences and surroundings as early as possible in life. A nursery which provides these has a pivotal role to play in your baby’s physical, mental and emotional growth.
ROOM FOR GROWTH
As a mum or dad, you are the primary ‘educator’ in every respect. But exposure to the world outside their home and interaction with other babies and children, along with the opportunity to explore sensory experiences in a safe and secure environment, accelerates the building of your child’s unique aptitudes, skills and personality traits.
Studies suggest that infants exposed to regular and varying stimuli reach important developmental milestones earlier, and this includes gaining a degree of independence, honing their emerging senses and having better physical coordination.
US researchers have concluded that babies who aren’t exposed to consistent stimulation will be at a distinct developmental disadvantage when they reach the first year of school, and even beyond.
WIRED TO LEARN
Human faces, voices and the diversity of touch and smell – all play an important role in development, with stimulation through speech, movement, touch and talk naturally driving curiosity, and concentration.
Even the simplest reflective action such as mirroring facial expressions or sounds are key developmental building blocks.
Singing is another key learning experience as babies react to the intonation in our voices, and songs with repetitive patterns are also essential for language development.
Living in a multicultural city like Dubai, if you want your little one to grow up speaking different languages, it’s worth noting that babies are able to distinguish between different language sounds – from any language – at just four months.
A long-term study, conducted by the US National Institute of Health, found that children achieved higher cognitive and academic achievement scores in their teens if they had a history in ‘high-quality’ daycare. The activities and interactions had a real impact on future development which reinforced and supplement the primary foundation of parenting.
Entrusting your child to someone new in a different environment comes with trepidation, but the right nursery choice will accelerate the emotional, social and physical development of your child from the first months of life. With an immersive learning environment at home and the nursery, your baby will be surrounded by immense sensorial opportunities that will be a major driver for their overall development as a child and ultimately, as an adult.
A nursery is an investment in your baby’s future, and in their learning journey through life. It’s never too early (or late) to introduce them to the nursery environment. To quote the acclaimed 18th-century Scottish scientist, Dr James Dewar: ‘Minds are like parachutes, they only function when they are open.’
Hummingbird Nursery DIFC, in collaboration with Neuropedia, is holding a workshop on Monday 22nd October with Dr Aman Sohal, Consultant Pediatric Neurologist, for parents to better understand neuro-development in their babies and toddlers. Find out more on our Facebook event.