2017 Mid-Year Report

20 years of Clubs in Skagit County!

20 years of Clubs in Skagit County!

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From the first minutes of life, babies

are always learning. You as their

parent are your child’s first and best

teacher. But not many people have

been taught how to be a good parent

and teacher. When we as parents

and caregivers better understand

the “brain science” of how babies

learn, we can help them be the best

they can be in life. Good quality early

learning builds the foundation for

success in life.

There has been a lot of research on

how babies brains grow. Brains grow over time starting

from simple connections and skills followed by

more complex circuits and skills. In the first few years

of life, many connections between the brain cells are

occurring—as many as 1 million new connections

form every second! To help those connections stay

strong, babies need responsive relationships and

positive environments.

Responsive relationships mean two way interactions—you

do something to get your baby to respond

to you or the baby does something to get a response

from you. For example, when you smile at your baby,

you want them to smile back. And when they smile at

you, they want you to smile back at them. Talk to your

baby about the things you see around you when you

take a walk or go to the grocery store. They are listening

and may move their arms or make noises in response

to your voice. During the day when your baby

makes noises or waves their arms, they are asking for

you to respond to them—mimic their movements or

laugh and talk to them. Read to your baby every day

for at least 10 minutes—they are learning new words

and they love the sound of your voice. If you have

older children in your house, have them read to your

Sue Kreinen

Early Learning Advocate

baby too. Your baby is learning every

minute so even in your routine daily

tasks, talk to your baby and show

them what you are doing.

Positive environments are safe,

stable, and caring. You are doing

everything to protect your baby

from getting hurt physically—you

use car seats and baby gates and

watch for what they are trying to

put in their mouths. Protect their

emotional well-being as well. Loud

noises and rough handling scare

babies so they need to be handled with care and

love. Sometimes, we all get overwhelmed and upset.

Your baby can feel that you are unhappy, so

give yourself a break and have someone take care

of your baby while you take some time for yourself.

The positive environment you create by taking care

of yourself as well as your baby will help all of you

enjoy being a family.

There are a number of resources available for you

to better understand how to be the best parent and

teacher for your children. A great source is your

local library. You can get a free subscription to Parenting

the First, Second and Third Year newsletter.

It comes in the mail every month and is great for

sharing with baby sitters, child care providers and

grandparents. Subscribe on line at www.brigidcollins.org.

It is available in Spanish. There is a Smart-

Phone app called Daily Vroom that gives you daily

activities and information about your baby/child.

Most of all remember your baby and children are

always learning so be the best parent and teacher

that you can be to help them achieve their full

quality of life.


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