Campbell Fiver Family Network

First Impressions last a lifetime…

Its not just a catch phrase, or one of those mildly interesting facts that stick in your mind when you are about to meet someone new or have a job interview- the value of first impressions can run much deeper than those scenarios. They can determine a whole life.
Interesting research continues in early childhood, showing the dramatic effects of experiences in the earliest phases of life. Even conditions in the womb influenced by maternal emotions, nutrition and education, have substantial effects on a child’s life. One study by physiology professor Stephen Mathews, expresses the connection between high stress during pregnancy and depression, anxiety and learning disorders for that baby in their later childhood.
Nature vs. Nurture- Research is more and more clearly demonstrating that our genetics are in constant conversation with our environment. Although our genes may dictate some certainties about us, our physical and mental experiences can modify the outcomes they forecast. For example, according to Stephen Lye, professor of obstetrics and gynecology who studies fetal health, children born with genetic factors for obesity, who developed near-normal body mass indexes in childhood, had something environmental in common- they were all breast fed for at least the first 6 months of life.
The most significant growth and development for humans takes place within the first 4 years of life. During this highly sensitive time, research shows, not only the importance of these years, but more specifically, which experiences , combinations of genetics and environment, and interventions make the most important differences in overall health.
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We are living in a time that allows us to take what we have been learning and do something with it. We have resources and information at our fingertips to make the most of the environments that are so impressionable, on not only our children, but us as well. For the latest recommendations and research findings in early childhood development visit your doctor, health unit, child development centre, family resource centre, supported child development centre or child care centre.
Rhonda Teramura
Is a mom of three boys, and ECE working as a contractor in Early Childhood Development.
Campbell Fiver Family Network

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