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A Strong Start Makes a Difference

The first five years of children’s lives amount to 90% of their overall brain development. This is a window of time where quality experiences become extremely important to support healthy growth.

See how everyday actions link up in your child’s brain

Why Early Learning Matters

Relationships and Interactions

Positive, encouraging adult-child interactions and experiences create a foundation in the brain that ensure the brain’s strength and resilience throughout life. Parents and caregivers have the ability to create experiences that are enjoyable, healthy, and constructive.

Environments and Experiences

While DNA sets the basic structure for brain development, a child’s experiences create the connections inside the brain that lay the groundwork for understanding emotions, developing language, mastering motor skills, refining vision, and forming memory.

Why This Matters To You

While the successful development of young children represents the future, it is through the collective investment of Early Care and Learning providers, families, and community leadership that children receive the support they need to flourish. Young children thrive when adults prioritize them. So, when we decide young children matter, we also decide that the adults in their life matter too.

Did You Know?

  • More than one million new brain connections are formed every second in the first few years of life.
  • Children who face greater adversity, like living in poverty, are at far greater risk for delays in their cognitive, language, or development. When children experience supportive, responsive relationships with adults, the effects of toxic stress may be prevented or reversed.
  • The brain is most flexible and adaptable to learning during the earliest years of life.
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