The first 5 years of life are critical for the healthy development of children. The experiences of early childhood form the core of our being, the code that shapes the rest of our lives. It is a time when children need to know they are loved, valued and respected. This, in turn, fosters the capacity to love, value and respect others.
A child’s early environment shapes the way their brain and body develops. A happy, healthy home and the availability of positive experiences will determine the strength of the brain’s developing architecture. In other words, a child’s early years are key to how their brains and bodies grow. Early experiences influence outcomes for healthy physical, intellectual, social and emotional growth.
This is a little scary when you think about your grown up children. As a parent you wonder did you do everything you could have done? The problem is you can’t go back and change what you did! The majority of children grow into healthy productive adults. We can’t beat ourselves up as we did the best we could with the knowledge we had. What we can do as we learn more about raising healthy happy children is to become involved in the community and support others that are still raising their chidlren. We can support our children that are parents now and we can be the best grandparents ever! Check out the www.foothillsnetwork.ca. This is a network of agencies that are working together to promote the early years. If you are a parent or a grandparent or a community member go to the network to find out what is going on in the community and to get information on best practise in the early years.