The Learning Baby
A baby's mind is like a sponge, constantly
soaking up information. Everything is a new and exciting experience for
a newborn baby. She is always absorbing information through her five senses
- sight, sound, smell, touch and taste. Human beings never stop learning,
but the rate at which babies learn cannot be achieved by an adult. A baby's
learning curve is almost perpendicular. Remember that your baby's emotions
and intellect are developing during the first weeks of life, just as rapidly
as his size, weight and coordination.
Stimulating your baby
Remember that you are the most important person in your baby's life. It is important that you establish a strong bond with her. Facial contact is extremely important, as your face is one of the few things a baby responds to in the first few weeks. Bring your face close to your baby's and be as animated as possible by smiling, moving your head and raising your eyebrows. Hold conversations with your baby. Read to your baby. She is never too young to look at books. Start with books that have brightly coloured pictures or even pop-up pictures.
Be an active guide, not an interfering one. Your baby should be learning what she wants to learn, not what you think she should be learning. Rid yourself of any preconceived notions you may have about what a child her age should or should not know.
Babies do not grow, develop and learn
at a constant rate. During a learning spurt, the baby will devour new ideas
and skills and apply them immediately. However, at the same time, she may
stop certain other activities or seem to forget certain skills. This usually
happens because the baby is concentrating her energies on learning new
things. Once she has mastered the new skill, the old ones will return.
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