Infant Education--how young to start?

Some statistics

Infant education is described as education that begins before age two. Many educators believe that early learning leads to greater success at dealing with the stresses that come with living the life of a fully grown adult. Let's look at some statistics.

One study found that children that are spoken to often, between the ages of 8  months to 2 years scored higher on IQ tests, later in life.

Some studies suggest that visual recognition and tactile/visual skills at ages 7-12 months can predict higher IQ scores at a later age.

Response time to visual cues at the tender age of 3 months led to higher scores for 4 year olds on verbal and performance IQs.

A researcher name Robert Titzer from the Southeastern Louisiana University found that if he showed an interactive video to infants, they could recognize by sight more than 100 words by the age of 12 months and more than 500 words by the age of 15 months.

Educating your child begins at birth

Okay, you're convinced. And now you know: educating your child begins at birth. The fact is, though, that babies learn from just about everything, simply by osmosis. Everything is a learning experience for a baby. The trick is to cultivate and enhance his environment to maximize his ability to absorb.

Amazing new-formed territory

As the mother of 12 children, I've found to my surprise that others don't necessarily share my fascination with newborns, preferring an age that is more verbal. In fact, I view infants as amazing new-formed territory and spending quality time with them, is, for me, a joy.

Here are some tips from me on how to interact with your infant in a way that will maximize his learning experience.

Make eye contact: when speaking to your newborn, make sure that he views you at eye level. One way to accomplish this is to lie in your bed, with your knees up, with the baby propped against your legs. Or, you might place the baby in an infant seat atop the dining room table, and sit in front of him.

Exaggerate the movements that your mouth makes as you speak or sing to him.

Speak slower than you would to an adult.

Speak in soft tones.

Watch for loss of concentration. Babies 'space out.' They break eye contact and look away from you. Take their cue and look away from them, too. Soon enough, you'll notice he swivels his head toward you for another session of fun.