Learning right from the beginning

Research tells us that rich and meaningful experiences are very important for your child’s learning and development. As a parent or caregiver, you are an important source of new information and experiences for your child. Your child’s learning process begins from even before they are born. In the beginning, you are the main source of new information and experiences for your baby.

Experiences develop your child’s brain

The development of your child’s brain is influenced by the variety and quality of experiences they have in their early years. Every experience helps to create new or strengthen existing connections in your child’s brain. Their brain actually grows in size when exposed to the stimulation of positive learning experiences.

You can support your child’s learning and development by providing opportunities for play and exploration in an environment that is stimulating, safe and secure. Experiences such as talking, singing and reading provide your child with opportunities to listen, imitate and express themselves.

Repeated experiences are good for your child

Your child likes, enjoys and learns from repeated experiences. For example, they enjoy hearing you sing a song over and over again and learn from reading the same story over and over again. Think about ways to extend experiences for your child. Your child’s experiences will be unique according to their interests, the interests of people around them and the encouragement and support they receive.

Helping them learn and develop

Infant (0-1 years)

Help your baby by:

  • spending time responding to their movements and sounds
  • providing different objects and materials for them to explore using all their senses
  • being playful together
  • noticing and responding to their preferences
  • taking time to talk.

Toddler (1-3 years)

Help your toddler by:

  • talking about and describing the things they see and hear in the world around them
  • offering them props such as toy telephones and hats so they can imitate and pretend
  • repeating favourite songs, stories and rhymes.

Young child (3-5 years)

Help your young child by:

  • encouraging them to experiment and try things for themselves
  • talking about what is happening as they are doing things
  • finding out answers to questions together
  • reminding them of things that have happened before
  • giving them ideas that help them in their imaginary play – what would it be like to be small like a mouse?
  • repeating favourite songs, stories and rhymes.

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