Find resources / Articles / Helping their brain develop in the early years

During the early years of a child's life, their brain is hardwired and the foundation is laid for how they will feel, think and behave for the rest of their life.

The Raising Children website has a video about the importance of the early years.

Raising children Supporting parents (video) | The importance of the first years(external link)

The video contains useful information about the early years and emphasises some important messages about brain development and how parents can help.

The video features Professor Sir Peter Gluckman, clinical social worker Lauren Porter and paediatrician Dr Simon Rowley.

You'll hear about:

  • the mechanics of brain development and attachment
  • what’s going on in a baby’s brain
  • what the baby needs from parents
  • the importance of having an adult who loves and cares for the baby
  • how it’s during the everyday ‘care moments’ that whānau can really make an impact on a baby’s brain development.

Top 10 tips and messages from the video

  1. Cuddle your baby.
  2. Talk to your baby.
  3. Read to your baby.
  4. Smile at your baby.
  5. Give your baby time.
  6. Give your baby attention and respond to their needs.
  7. Allow children to play.
  8. Allow children to ask questions.
  9. Allow children to explore.
  10. Enjoy the journey and have fun!

About Raising Children

Raising Children has lots of advice and parenting inspiration. You can sign up to access all the information – it's free. You can also download a free app to get regular tips and 'age and stage' notifications.

Raising Children Supporting parents | Sign up(external link)

Raising Children Supporting parents | Dowload our app(external link)

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