In order for children to reach their full potential, early childhood stimulation is very important. This can be by engaging with, talking to, playing with, and reading to your child. To see if a child is developing well it is also important to keep track of the developmental milestones.
Early childhood development
“Early childhood development refers to the cognitive, physical, language, motor, social and emotional development of children from conception to 8 years of age.”:
- The first years of a child’s life set the stage for healthy growth and development.
- In the earliest years of life, especially from the start of pregnancy till the child reaches the age of 2 years, a child needs nutrition, protection, and stimulation for healthy brain development.
- During the earliest years of life, a child’s brain forms millions of new connections.
- Life experiences including good nutrition, protection, and stimulation from talking, playing, and responsive attention from parents are important to build a child’s brain.
- For a child in a low- or middle-income country, poor early development could mean they will earn around one-quarter less in income, as an adult.
- During the first 1,000 days of life a child is developing rapidly, there are development goals for each age period (developmental milestones).
- By regularly checking physical growth and development milestones we can track and ensure children can reach their full potential.
- Children grow and develop well if they are adequately fed, nurtured and cared for, loved and stimulated and do not get ill often.
Development of a child
Video - child development
Developmental milestones in the first 1,000 days of life
Child 0-4 months old
Child 4-6 months old
Child 6-8 months old
Child 8-12 months old
Child 12-18 months old
Child 18-24 months old
Certa Nutritio. (2020, 1 April). GloCal Nutrition [Video]. YouTube. https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCvxwMjlLzZP_l3CvIWPZHCg
Nestlé Nutrition. (2015). [Overview developmental milestones in the first 1,000 days of life]. https://www.nestlemomandme.in.th/sites/default/files/pdf1000days/developmental_milestones_0_0.pdf