Meet Maya. Maya is only 18 months old, but she’s already had a variety of experiences. From coloring and eating meals to playing with her parents, she is learning about the world.
All of these activities and interactions form new connections in Maya’s brain. Early experiences shape brain growth, which promotes healthy social, emotional, language, and cognitive development.
What is it about these interactions that make them so important for early learning? This module explores some of the key features of early interactions that will prepare Maya to be ready for school at age five.
- Back-and-forth or contingent interactions
- exchanges in which a caregiver times her responses to a child’s behavior
- observing then reproducing, or copying, a behavior
- Infant-directed speech
- a special tone and style of speech used to talk to young children. It’s also called parentese.
- the support a caregiver provides a child to help her achieve more than she would be able to accomplish on her own