How Long Have We Known What Is Essential To Healthy Development?

Monday, January 28, 2013

It is quite frequent that I ask the question…  

“Why is it that we know what a developing brain needs, but with increasing frequency too many children are experiencing the opposite?” 

There are numerous scientific research studies that provide evidence of what is needed for a child’s healthy development.  These of course are things I write and speak about every day. I, along with many other professionals, share information about the importance of play, nutrition, sleep, time in nature, and physical activity.

Today I picked up a book that I have had on my bookshelf for awhile. In flipping through it, I found the following statements:  

“Play, is the development of the human mind, its first effort to make acquaintance with the outside world. The child indeed sees no purpose in it, sees not the end that is to be reached; but it expresses its own nature, and that is human nature in its playful activity.” 

Additionally, it goes on to say…

“It is the duty of every teacher, whether in city or country, to impress upon pupils, by emphatic iteration, the laws of health in relation to food, air, sleep, rest, exercise, play, work and personal habits in general. Teachers should give attention to the encouragement of games, play and amusement.”

“It is a mistaken notion of some pedagogues that the chief end of children is to go to school and study lessons from books. It is painful to witness, in many schools, how the plastic, growing bodies are cramped, how natural impulses are repressed, how the laws of nature are systematically violated. Physicians know this, though teachers and parents shut their eyes to the painful facts.”

Are you surprised to find out that these statements were published in, 

Methods of Teaching by John Swett .......
in 1883!!!!!?

We have known what is best for children's healthy development and learning for at least 130 years. And, now due to technological advances, we even have scientific evidence to show us what is best for young growing bodies and brains. It is no longer only based on theory and behavioral studies, and we are still having to promote, educate and advocate for children to get all of what they need most!!......

Let's ensure this changes NOW!!! 
I invite you to share insights frequently to make this important information finally become common knowledge 
and common practice. 

The children are depending on us!


Brain Development Activity Packets   
Have fun interactive learning ideas right on hand to entertain and help young brains develop in the healthy ways they deserve!
There is one for parents of each age from Birth up through age 5! 
(English and Spanish) 

Also available are 
 Brain Packets  
for dedicated Early Childhood Educators through  
Redleaf Press


Brain Series for ECE

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