Children do not need special toys or videos to stimulate their brain development.

Free Parenting Resources

ZERO TO THREE offers downloadable resources on a wide variety of topics and organized by age (e.g., birth to four months), many of which are available in English and Spanish. Click here to learn more

Click here to find fun ways to build your child’s brain everyday

Why Attendance Matters

Reading Skills By Age

Sesame Street for Parents

Positive Parenting Tips

Reading Skills by Age

 

Early Learning at Home

You are your child's first & most important teacher!

It's a big responsibility, but there are little things you can do every day that will give your child a great start in life and in and school. In fact, you may already be doing them!

A child's early experiences shape his or her brain structure and cognition. Every experience is a learning experience from birth to five, so every interaction you have with your child, whether you're sharing affectionate moments, talking or playing are important to his or her development.

Infants


Infant and toddler brain development depends on relationships, and babies are emotionally connected to us from birth. Research tells us that looking into a baby's eyes helps her or him feel secure and learn about the world, and babies and toddlers learn about emotions from watching and listening to other people.

Gift guide for babies and young toddlers:
http://www.modernparentsmessykids.com/gift-guide-2013-best-toys-for-babies-young-toddlers

How does your baby communicate?

http://toosmall.org/blog/how-does-your-baby-communicate
http://kidshealth.org/en/parents/c12yr.html
http://www.pbs.org/parents/talkingwithkids/agebyage_1.html
http://talkingisteaching.org




Toddlers


Your child's first three years are the most important. Studies have clearly shown that the positive growth in these first three years is far more important than anyone thought before. In their simple, everyday activities, infants and toddlers form the building blocks of all later development.

Gift guides for toddlers:
Click here

If you have a toddler then you’ve had to deal with challenging behavior. Here are a few tips to help:
http://www.pbs.org/parents/inclusivecommunities...
http://csefel.vanderbilt.edu/resources/family.html


Preschoolers


It's hard to believe your preschooler was ever that tiny baby that you held in your arms. He or she is becoming more independent and capable every day.  You might notice that your preschooler wants to do everything on her or his own and help with everything you are doing. Your preschooler wants to be in charge and lets you know it. It's important to balance letting her or him be independent with keeping her or him safe.

Gift ideas for preschoolers:
https://modernparentsmessykids.com/mpmk-gift-guide-go-gifts-preschoolers/

Tips to help your preschooler get ready to read:
http://www.pbs.org/parents/expert-tips-advice/2015/11/help-your-preschooler-get-ready-to-read/



Love: Social interaction and imitative learning play an important role in early brain and behavioral development. Love is just as important as nutritious food to raise a healthy child. Your gentle touch, attention and understanding help your child grow in every way. In fact, the stronger your relationship is with your child, the easier it will be for her to make friends and do well in school because she feels safe and loved at home.

Talk: Children's early language skills predict future reading abilities, and skills not developed early are difficult to remediate later on. As soon as your child is born, start talking, singing and rhyming about anything and everything. These interactions start building your child's language skills long before he can talk or understand what's being said. They're also critical in helping him learn to read. They're also critical in helping your baby learn to read.

Play: Human cognition and innovation depends on memory, logic, mathematical reasoning, and the manipulation of physical tools and abstract symbols. Playing is not only fun; it's also how your child learns. During play, she's trying out new skills, using her imagination and creativity and learning about relationships with other people. She needs lots of opportunities every day to explore and enjoy the world around her. She wants you to join the fun because YOU are her favorite toy.



Office of Early Learning
Delaware Department of Education
401 Federal Street
Dover, DE 19901
(302) 735-4295
early.learning@doe.k12.de.us