“Spend enough quality time with your kid”. How many times have we not heard of this advice from parenting experts? Yet again, how exactly and why such a thing is important is hardly discussed. In a competition-driven world, we already want our child to know and learn way too much. But how much of that is done consciously? How much of that is done merely to “meet some formalities”? The answer to these questions can help us exercise conscious parenting.
But first, a quick dip into the biology of the brain. The human brain is made up of billions of nerve cells with countless interconnecting pathways. Through an elaborate and complex network, the brain
- Can store experiences
- Solve problems
- Has a capability of imagination, reasoning and decision making.
(Image source: Shutterstock)
Science tells us that the right kind of experiences in the early years can help a child’s brain grow. And this can affect how they continue to learn later on in life. Growing children are full of enthusiasm, curiosity and energy. If they get a nurturing environment throughout the crucial growing-up period, they develop into winners.
Good and early experiences are to your brains just as good food and exercise is for your body. Even before babies can walk and talk, their brainpower starts developing. Evidence suggests us that success in life, health and emotional well-being find their roots in early childhood. We know that if we get it right in the early years, we can expect to see children succeed throughout school and their adult lives.
As parents we observe the physical developments of children, and many times we tend to ignore the development signs in emotional and cognitive areas. Life is a collection of experiences. An experience can be either a positive or a negative experience, and this depends on the way the experience is perceived. Positive experiences give immense morale-boosting while negative experiences give a lot of learning experiences.
A child’s mind is just like a sponge. Every new word they learn, every new behavior they adopt, translates into an experience and thus shapes learning for a lifetime. These early childhood experiences are the foundation for the development of an intellectually sharp and an emotionally strong child.
5 Steps to create a rich and stimulating experience for children.
- Invest a lot of time with your child. Spending enough quality time with your child gives the right opportunity to share your experiences with your child.
- Talk to your child. Talking to your child gives you an entry into the child’s inner world and helps you understand the thoughts and feelings of the child.
- Introduce your child to a healthy habit of reading. The reading along with your child enriches the experiences of the child.
- Play it up. Playing with your children can help them develop self-regulation and promote language, cognition and social competence.
- Children grow best when they have secure relationships. Having a strong bonding helps in strengthening the emotional quotient.
But how to design such experiences? Watch this space for more.
Conscious parenting calls for a careful designing of experiences for children. The benefits of such an exercise are many including – a smooth transition to school, better learning outcomes, better health and in all a better education.
Medha Kedar Tonapi
Psychotherapist, Parent Coach, Life Coach
Image credits: Shutterstock