Back to Basics
When it comes to stimulating your baby’s development, keep it simple, natural, intimate and interactional. Your baby does not need fast paced ENTERTAINING, but rather slow paced, gentle interactions with YOU.
Newest research points to what is really important for a baby’s developing brain, and they call it “Serve and Return”. This is all about how you respond to your baby’s eye gaze, facial expressions, gestures, his cooing, babble and cries, her head and body movements. This is how your baby ‘serves’, and your attuned responses are the ‘return’. It is this cycle of intimate engagement and back and forth interaction that grows neural pathways.
Did you know…
- In the early years, 700 to 1000 new connections form every second.
We know that babies are born with great potential.
We know that the environment of relationships is what is most important for stimulating brain development.
The relationship between you and your baby is a synchronised dance of ‘feeling’ your child’s rhythms of responses to the environment, picking up on non-verbal cues and adapting the interactions and environmental demands to assist her maintain an organised, regulated state. In the first two years, you play a very important role in regulating your baby’s immature nervous system until he learns to self-regulate within a variety of sensory, social and emotional experiences.
So, getting back to basics…stimulation is not so much about entertainment, but rather about how we interact and respond to our babies.
By Kate Bailey and Nicky Lasch