Baby’s brain

Stimulating baby’s brain won’t guarantee future academic success, writes Sara Mead on Education Sector.

While neural connections in babies’ brains grow rapidly in the early years, adults can’t make newborns smarter or more successful by having them listen to Beethoven or play with Einstein-inspired blocks. Nor is there any neuroscience evidence that suggests that the earliest years are a singular window for growth that slams shut once children turn three. To the contrary, the social programs with the strongest evidence of positive long-term impacts, including high-quality preschool programs, take place outside the zero-to-three window.

The now-or-never theory of child development doesn’t just waste public money on sending a Bach CD to every baby, Mead writes. It’s not just a case of anxious parents stocking up on Baby Einstein videos.

More darkly, some have seized on the importance of early brain development in an effort to excuse elementary and secondary schools from the difficult task of working hard on behalf of all students — on the grounds that by the time many students get to school they are already hopelessly and permanently behind.

In 1997, Hillary Clinton, then the first lady, held a White House conference on child development that spread the children’s brains can be changed in the “first three years,” but then lose their ability to adapt.

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Comments

  1. Walter E. Wallis says:

    “In 1997, Hillary Clinton, then the first lady, held a White House conference on child development that spread the children’s brains can be changed in the “first three years,” but then lose their ability to adapt.”
    This is true, but only for democrats.

  2. Miller Smith says:

    A child with Downs’ is born hopelessly and helplessly behind. Forever. Blame the genes. So, the argument that genetics is-at the very least-a significant contributor to student ability that cannot be compensated for is legitimate.

    Most people don’t like that. I don’t, but it is true.

    The outrage is when students who have the full genetic potential to go to college are ripped off by school systems that focus on basics for all 12 years rather than making sure the students are well beyond those basics by the end of 8th grade.

  3. Frank Zavisca says:

    Hillary Clinton wants our children in “Universal Preschool” so she can indoctrinate them to be Democrats (teaching homosexual sensitivity, global warming alarmism, etc.).

    Hillary can’t even remember which way she voted for the War in Iraq. Would you trust her to remember what to do with a 2 year old?