Every parent desires that his or her child grow up to be a genius. Let's not for those parents who wish their infants become Einstein overnight. As babies grow and develop, their motor and cognitive abilities also advance. These milestones amaze their parents, as they move from a little baby who can only grasp the thumb, to one who can think creatively and play with things around the home without much guidance from the parents. Babies can develop some abilities with or without their parents' help, but there are ways to nurture the important skills such as motor and cognitive, which in turn are necessary for brain development, and these are done through simple and basic activities.
But why would parents want their kids to be geniuses right off the bat? How do they boost brain development in their kids to achieve that goal? Among the things parents do is engaging children in activities that will help them develop and stimulate their minds. This can be anything from simple toys, singing, basic play, and other baby games and activities around and outside of the home. The important thing to note is that a child needs to play as this is how he or she learns and picks up a lot of skills. Of course, there needs to be a fun element to it, so they can give it their all as they grow and develop.
Here are 15 ways parents can help raise geniuses from birth.
Food is fuel to the human body. Which means that for anyone's brain to perform at optimal level, there must be a mix of food components that are important for the brain, especially the kids you're trying to nurture to be geniuses. According to Activebeat.com, this mix of healthy foods includes carbs, lean proteins, fatty acids, vitamins, and antioxidants. It's best to give a child a head start on these solid foods before they hit the books when they go to school.
Among the best brain powering foods that can help your child get on the path to being a genius include fish, dark chocolate, blueberries, nuts, whole grains, and foods rich in omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids. Most importantly, let's not forget the water!
These foods and, of course water, are known to foster a child's brain development. It also keeps the brain in good health and allows the brain to retain an excellent memory while preventing inflammation that can cause cellular breakdown and disease both in a child's body and brain.
Kids should eat well from the moment they wake up, as breakfast is the most important meal of the day. They will have the energy and ability to focus on their toys and daycare education. They will also benefit by being able to retain what they are learning, as well as the environment that surrounds them. They also get to enjoy playtime more so than that of a child that doesn't eat breakfast. Above all, their tiny brains develop much faster than kids who don't eat healthy foods.
There's something about having a genius in your house that just makes any parent proud and ready to show their child off. I mean, who wouldn't? When you see them excel academically and still manage to do well in other areas of their lives, it's normal you will want to boast about them. You may even notice that you're walking differently or your mood shifts. It makes parents feel good.
However, trying to turn a child into an overnight genius can be exhausting to, both, the parent and child. Sometimes, you may feel like there is something that was not done properly that day, and may want to go through the checklist of things to do one more time. You have tried all the tips and tricks books have to offer just to ensure that you are on track. Parents, don't fret. A child needs to sleep too! And, if you want to raise a genius, you have to let them rest also.
It is good to allow the kids to sleep a little longer, but within the required minimum time in accordance with their age. They just need to sleep early and wake up energetic to take up the day's challenge. If they stay up late and wake up early, it interferes with the way the brain consolidates and processes information. They become irritated, and their concentration levels are also affected. Poor sleep leads to weakened immune systems and reduces the ability to memorize new information.
Playtime is essential to a child's growth and development, not just physically, but also psychologically and emotionally. An enriched play environment helps a baby develop better and learn skills he will use later in life. It is linked to better education, development, socialization, and a stronger intellect. When playful material are made available to kids, it becomes one of the predictors of intelligence.
Toys don't have to be costly or brand new, but safe. Simple and affordable toys will do the trick.
According to Cnn.com, playing is the fuel of intellectual activity in children, as it makes them smarter while helping them acquire basic skills like learning about an object and how it works. It also helps them learn about colors, sizes, shapes, and numbers. Playing also helps babies learn social skills like taking turns, following rules, self-control and empathy, helps develop impulse control, reduces stress, improves memory and concentration, and promotes language and literacy. Among the toys parents can buy their baby include blocks to promote physical development and motor skills, dolls for pretend play, boxes for imagination and creativity, bowls for auditory simulation, and even bubbles for eye and visual tracking development.
When children are playing, their walls are let down and they enjoy the activities provided with their whole heart. This is what makes play very important for them because at their young age, playing and learning are closely connected. Hence, the increasing popularity of playgroups.
Mylittlemoppet.com defines a playgroup as more of a step between home and the big D word: Daycare! Playgroups also care for kids between the ages of 2 and 3 years for up to 3 hours daily. This helps kids learn the basic skills that will prepare them for daycare or preschool, in a friendly and calm, relaxing environment. In a playgroup, children learn about arts and crafts, music, movement, books and stories, and different kinds of play like adventure, water, and even sand - they're great fun!
The best part is your little genius learns valuable skills and experiences while he is scribbling, or playing in the sandpit. Attending a playgroup is beneficial as the child develops new relationships with others, reduces the risks of anxiety and they will experience new toys and games. Above all, the lovely team of educators will read the books and teach them about songs and music. They will learn new skills like conflict resolution, problem-solving, sharing, and cooperation, all while learning about themselves and those around them. Playgroups are also good for the parents as they offer support and social contact while giving the child more independence from mom and dad.
If you want to raise a genius, you've got to let your child's imagination and creativity run wild. Don't overwork them, but let them stretch their education. These are two meanings by which children come up with ideas nobody else thinks of. You can help your child by playing a game which involves the child to think of ways in which things differ from one another. It's also important to ask open-ended questions like,
"Where did this come from?" Or "How come this car is blue but this car is red?"
It's more important to ask questions than it is for a child to have the answer. They will learn not only about the question you asked but why you asked them. Above all, they will learn about all the 5 W's and the 1 H: who, what, when, where, why and how?
It's more about asking the important questions than having the right answers. Most kids have trouble expressing their creativity, which is why providing some creative toys allows your child to get creative while encouraging their imagination. It also allows the child to learn how they work or why they work when they do it themselves. Creativity isn't about art alone, but it takes various forms of expressions.
Childdevelopment.info suggests that creative toys can be anything from building blocks, legos (get the big ones so they don't put them in their mouths), kits to build their own creative toys, art toys like magnetic drawing boards and finger paint. Let's not forget every parents' favorite musical toys, like xylophones or tambourines or a karaoke machine and sing-along CDs or DVDs. The result is the child is more likely to do their best at, both, school and in life, as he has been allowed to be creative. He then has a greater interest in learning.
Museum exhibits are the best places to learn about history and is preserved for posterity. If it was not for museums, most of us would hardly know about the history of our countries, where we came from and ways animals and humans have evolved. This is why it is important for children to visit museums regularly. History is old and the new generation of children only know about the digital world. There is no education where they can learn with touch and sound, smell and sight. So, let's take a moment to thank all museums for helping us raise a group of little geniuses.
Accord to Arts.gov, visiting a museum teaches a child about world history while understanding the history of other cultures and languages. It gives our children, and ourselves, insights into the past while helping us predict what the future will look like. They are a great place to pass the time and boost our morals. In most cases, walking through a museum can help calm a child's mood (we said most cases.) Museums are magical and can offer the "Wow!" factor from children that all parents strive for.
Most museums have interactive exhibits and entertainment centers to capture a child's attention. Other benefits to a baby's intellect include changing perspectives because each piece of history has a unique story. They also get to learn about human history and cultures and draw inspiration which allows their creative juices to flow. Thus, this stimulates new ideas in a child such as art, music, design and creative writing.
Every parent's dream is that their children have better lives than they did. This is good because it displays the parent's selflessness to his or her own child. It also makes a parent mature enough to let their kids enjoy life more than they did when they were young. Granted, this is good but it doesn't, in any way, mean letting a child have anything and everything they have asked for. Although it may be tempting to run to the toy store and buy them every item in every color, this is not a positive reinforcement for parents longterm. The reason why parents should not indulge in every "I want!" that a child has to offer, is to allow a child to grow their own independence. When the time will be right, have your child do a chore around the house, here and there.
Let's share an insightful example, shall we? My 3 years old is in charge of setting the table with placemats and his plastic plate and spoon. For this task, my 3 years old receives $0.50. It may not sound like much, but doing this twice a day (he's at daycare for lunch) seven days a week, eventually, it will add up and he will be able to buy that red car he's been eyeing.
What this means is you don't impose every decisions on your child's life, in the same way you wouldn't want people imposing on yours. Instead, you would rather learning it on your own rather than having someone tell you over and over again.
Kids easily adapt to the environment they are in. If you have a reading practice in your home, they will easily pick it up. When they notice you're holding any reading material, they will ask to read it as well, or request for their own. Allow the child to go through their reading material and later read it with them. As they begin to connect their understanding with the information you give them, they end up reading the book themselves. Also, develop a mini library which they can easily access.
The more information they gather, the more their brains can stretch to new things.
As they develop an interest to reading, they will begin to choose what book to read, which is a good sign. Make reading interesting. The more information that is brought to their level, the easier it is for them to understand, and the more interest they develop in it to even know much more. You can find fun ways of engaging a child's mind using the simplest ways like using song, role playing, or even modeling the same game with their own toys. These are the things they know and play with almost on a daily basis. It's important for parents to bring the stories to life, and watch the baby develop intellectually.
The American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) found in studies on children that television isn't a good use of a child's time. The studies that affirmed the findings of the AAP involved groups of children between 6, 12 and 18 months, who watched cartoons played back to back such that the toons did everything in reverse. It showed that only the 18 month old kids showed preference for the correct order. This led the researchers to conclude that until about age 2, young children cannot cognitively understand anything said on TV, neither can they retain that information. Consequently, the AAP updated its policy statement on media use for children below the age of 2, because there's nothing like educational television for them.
However, there are parents who said it is important for their kids. But, researchers say there's a digital developmental divide, and that kids younger than 2 are at risk of delayed language skills. Either way, too much television breeds less parent-child interaction and reduces the time they should bond, during which the child learns more from mom or dad, in turn developing their language skills. The best thing is to strictly limit TV time (up to 1 hours for kids over 2 years), and have more time playing with the kids which is the best way for them to learn, than from watching TV.
Like adults, children also get feelings of disappointment and/or discouragement sometimes. That's why moms and dads are there, to help them get past those moments with a glimmer of optimism at the very least. Some kids have a hard time mustering this compared to others, and according to pbs.org, this pessimistic responses to negative events increase the risk of depression in children. It involves believing these events are caused by personal, pervasive or permanent events. This is why you find kids saying stuff like 'I'm bad at everything', which isn't true.
When such disappointments come, children who are pessimistic blame themselves and their flaws, assuming life is dull and ruined and won't ever improve. On the flip side, optimistic children see those negative events as caused by external forces that are temporary and won't affect their whole lives. Parents need to shift the pessimistic thoughts using a gentle approach, without scolding or arguing. Some things parents can do to encourage optimism are things like responding to their needs with empathy, challenging their thinking, giving a hug or water or just sharing a funny joke to reset the child emotionally. Also it is best to address the complaining habit, and helping the child remember the times when things turned out great or better than they expected.
Storytime is always fun with mom and dad, and is vastly beneficial to a baby's development. According to the American Academy of Pediatrics, 35 percent of American children start kindergarten without sufficient language skills. This is why story time, or reading aloud to your child, is emphasized because it is through these interactions that a baby learns language and social skills. It also develops abilities that will advance school learning. Other benefits include fostering a bond between baby and the parents, which the child associates with the pleasures of being with his mom and dad, hence a love of reading.
Parents.com reports that reading to the baby from birth establishes the reading habit and culture.
Parents can read daily once the baby is six months or so, as the brain is stimulated, and the early exposure helps him or her become a better, and more successful reader and writer.
By one year, the baby needs to be exposed to developmental books, and by 2 they'll be ready to experience the pleasures that books can provide. Parents are encouraged to set a time every day to read stories with their baby. The most important part about being a reading mom or dad, is the voice entertainment it provides a child. An angry male bear sounds much different than a damsel in distress, for example.
Kids need to be taught the responsibilities chores provide. There are times when parents are left wondering what is the best age to start household chores. There are other parents who believe that chores are not a necessity for a child. However, parents should strive for their child to pitch in, even if they are tiny little youngsters who need to enjoy their childhood. There is nothing wrong with asking them to clear their plates at the end of their meal, or put their dirty clothes in the hamper at the end of the day.
Chores help children learn how to be responsible while gaining important life skills that they'll use for life. According to verywellfamily.com, the benefits of giving a child chores include offering a sense of accomplishment as they will feel as though they're part of a team. Chores encourages children to be the best of citizens, while learning how to be independent at a very young age. For preschool children, simple chores like picking up their toys, returning things where they found them, and learning how to clean up their room (maybe even make the bed) is best.
However, this is not to say that all children need to be independent otherwise they won't be to function. It's always best to make sure a child feels as though he can count on his parents, siblings, teachers and friends that surround them. After they've picked up their toys, give them a sticker or a monetary exchange a huge "WAY TO GO CHAMP!" Also, don't expect perfection. These things take time.
Henry Ford said, "Failure is only the opportunity to begin again more intelligently", he was right. It is safe to say that no parent likes seeing a child fail. In fact, it is one of the most painful moments in a parents life to watch a child suffer through feelings of failure and disappointment. A child will practice as hard as they can to spell a word, or to kick the ball in the net, and yet, they 're not quite there yet.
These are elements that create a sense of failure, not just in the parent, but the child as well.
Other painful moments that the parent may not be there to witness is when other kids ignore a child, or don't want him or her sitting with them at lunch, or they just don't fit in with the rest - it's gut-wrenching reality to say the least.
Either way, the reality of failure is not meant to put us down, but is there to be a lesson in life towards their success, but that depends on how we handle or cope with it, otherwise it can be a great learning experience that helps your child improve and succeed in the future. Failure is part of lie, and can produce feelings of anger, sadness, or low self esteem in any human being, young or old.
For kids, they can learn how to recognize and deal with these feelings positively. Remember the point about encouraging optimism? It helps. Children also look at how parents deal with and accept failure. This influences how they respond too as they can model our behavior when they face failure themselves. To turn this around, parents need to encourage and praise kids, let them talk it out while helping them identify the painful emotions and express them properly, and let them know that winning isn't everything.
"All highly intelligent people are not necessarily musical, but all highly musical people are apparently highly intelligent," these were the words of music researchers Desmond Sergeant and Gillian Thatcher in 1974, according to Theconversation.com. While there's no conclusive evidence from research to prove that listening to music makes one smarter, there's proof that listening shows an improvement in some types of mental tasks. For children, music helps them apply themselves and helps them be better at teamwork and appreciating shared goals. It also helps nurture development of these abilities, and thus music and dance should be part of your child's life if you want to raise a genius.
Singing and music are important in human culture. From birth, you'll find parents who use music to calm and soothe their baby's kicks, or lull them sleep when they are born. Dancing with children is a form of expression, love and joy, while engaging and interacting with the child. Studies have shown that a child's brain development improves with music, as it ignites his intellectual, social, emotional, motor, language and literacy developmental skills, as his mind and body work in sync. This exposure, at an early age, also helps them learn different sounds, and meanings of words, while dancing builds motor skills and helps them express themselves.
Children can sing together in a group or play instruments, while infants listening to music can mimic sounds, move to the music, and recognize the melodies before they even understand words. The key to music and dance with infants, toddlers, and preschoolers is repetition, and using rhythms with a definite beat that ask them to do things.
According to Parents.com, there are three main types of intelligence that you can nurture in your baby, as they grow and as you prepare the child to be a genius: emotional, sound or speech, and math or logic. Each of these three has activities therein that can help the child grow not just intellectually, but also socially and physically.
But the most important thing about you being there is the bonding time you enjoy with a baby, and vice versa.
When a baby and his parents have time to bond, research shows that their brains develop by making neural pathways, which are new connections that help build the child's foundation to learn things and behaviors. If these are developed and maintained early enough, the child learns more later on and becomes even more intelligent. There's so much parents can do to get the time to bond with baby, including during bath time, while playing, while reading stories to the baby, while singing and dancing together, going out for a walk or basking in the warm sun together. Don't forget to cuddle on the sofa, as you hum a nice tune. During all these and other moments, kids not only get to know their moms and dads better, but also pick up on a lot of skills that help him or her grow and develop even faster, and place them on their way to becoming geniuses.