Wise Wednesday Brain Byte: Developing the Preschool Brain

According to David A. Sousa in The Leadership Brain: How to Lead Today’s Schools More Effectively:

After birth the neurons in the young brain make connections at an incredible pace as the child absorbs its environment.  Information is entering the brain through “windows” that emerge and taper off at various times.  The richer the environment, the greater the number of connections that are made; consequently, learning can take place faster and with greater meaning.  Thus, at an early age, experiences are already shaping the brain and designing the unique neural architecture that will influence how it handles future experiences in school, work, and other places (Sousa, 2001a).

Preschool Learning Toy

Glenn Doman of The Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential made a personal impact on my extended family’s life when my cousin’s brain was damaged a birth by the use of forceps her parents were told that she would never walk, nor live a quality life.  My Aunt and Uncle did not accept that diagnosis and did everything they could to get educated, get help, and make a difference in Karen’s life.  Including attending the Doman Brain Institute, as it was called at the time.  Through a long series of physical, social/emotional and intellectual exercises, Karen, responded with remarkable results!  She was walking and talking by about the age of three. She turns 50 years old this year and has accomplished so much more than the MDs predicted.

The brain is a remarkable organ.  I have another friend who had healthy children, and yet she sought to learn all of the best methods to teach them to be all that they could be, so she attended Doman’s Institute for a different reason, but with successful results.  She credits his work with helping her to train her exceptionally creative and musically gifted children.

Here is the information included on Amazon with regard to several of his books that tap into growing preschool brains:

Time and again, the work performed at The Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential has demonstrated that children from birth to age six are capable of learning better and faster than older children. How To Teach Your Baby To Read shows just how easy it is to teach a young child to read, while How To Teach Your Baby Math presents the simple steps for teaching mathematics through the development of thinking and reasoning skills. Both books explain how to begin and expand each program, how to make and organize necessary materials, and how to more fully develop your child’s reading and math potential.
How to Give Your Baby Encyclopedic Knowledge shows how simple it is to develop a program that cultivates a young child’s awareness and understanding of the arts, science, and nature—to recognize the insects in the garden, to learn about the countries of the world, to discover the beauty of a Van Gogh painting, and much more. How To Multiply Your Baby’s Intelligence provides a comprehensive program for teaching your young child how to read, to understand mathematics, and to literally multiply his or her overall learning potential in preparation for a lifetime of success.

The Gentle Revolution Series:

The Institutes for the Achievement of Human Potential has been successfully serving children and teaching parents for five decades. Its goal has been to significantly improve the intellectual, physical, and social development of all children. The groundbreaking methods and techniques of The Institutes have set the standards in early childhood education. As a result, the books written by Glenn Doman, founder of this organization, have become the all-time best-selling parenting series in the United States and the world.

I cannot personally attest to his work, as I did not implement his systems literally for my kids.  However, I did incorporate several concepts he promotes and I believe he has made a positive impact on many lives, in spite of the criticism he receives for being pseudoscientific.  Will scientists ever be in full agreement with one another, let alone someone who is not a PhD?  I value critical research and the scientific community greatly, however, there is a vast territory of the unknown in the world of intellectual development:  I say, go with what works!  And continue to be a lifelong learner, testing what is said to work against real time results and making adjustments along the way.

Bottom Line:  Let your preschooler explore their environment with all the senses and encourage him/her to try new foods, experiences, and so on to grow new neural connections.  This I did do, and my boys are achieving high marks in school.  Start early and make learning fun!

 

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