Early Experiences Matter

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Little Kids, Big Questions
is a series of 12 podcasts that translates the research of early childhood development into parenting practices that mothers, fathers and other caregivers can tailor to the needs of their own child and family. Click here to listen to or download the podcasts. This podcast series is generously funded by MetLife Foundation.

What do babies think when they look at pictures in a book? - Even very young babies are able to focus on and pay attention to pictures in a book, although they don't yet know what the pictures mean. Read More

Why does my 8-month-old put everything in his mouth--and how can I get him to stop? - Mouthing is not only normal for an 8-month-old, it signals a growing interest in the world. In the first year, children explore their surroundings through their senses--seeing, touching, hearing, smelling, and tasting. Read More

Can holding, cuddling, and eye contact help babies grow and develop? - The positive emotional and physical experiences that a baby has in the earliest years of life are necessary for the growth of a healthy brain. Our expressions of caring through touching, rocking, talking, smiling, and singing are a kind of nourishment for the baby. These experiences, repeated many times over the course of a day, provide the foundation for the brain's early development. Read More

How do I help my 9-month-old be more active and motivated to explore? - Just as adults have their own approach to the world, so do babies. Some are outgoing and eager for new experiences while others need more time to get used to new situations. Read More

My one-year-old wants to play with the same toy or hear the same book over and over. Is this typical? - Telling the same stories and singing the same songs over and over may feel boring to you, but for a young child, learning happens with repetition. Read More

Does my toddler have a short attention span if she doesn’t like to sit to hear stories? - It is perfectly normal for toddlers to not sit still very long--period. Most don’t like to stay in one place for long now that they can explore in so many new ways-- by running, jumping and climbing. Read More

Why has my toddler started throwing tantrums about the rules we have? - Between approximately 2 and 3, children begin to understand the logical connection between ideas, which is the reason they start to ask “Why?” about almost everything! Read More

When do toddlers understand logic? - There are several variables that can strain your child’s ability to accept your logical explanations: being tired or hungry; having eagerly anticipated the thing or activity she is not being allowed to have or do; or being a temperamentally intense, persistent child by nature. Read More

Why does my toddler ask “why” all the time? - Because between ages 2 and 3, children develop the cognitive ability to make logical connections between things--to understand why things happen. Read More





Using Questions to Support Your Child’s Learning
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Does my toddler have a short attention span if she doesn’t like to sit to hear stories?
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When do toddlers understand logic?
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What do babies think when they look at pictures in a book?
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