Children are not born with an instruction guide! The early years present incredible opportunity to build a strong foundation as the brain rapidly develops during the first five years of life. Sometimes we just need to ask an “expert” a question that might sound silly…but still needs to be asked. First 5 Fox Valley is giving you a quick source for Frequently Asked parenting Questions. If you don’t see a topic here- just give us a call or start a chat for additional resources.
Safe sleep is critical to a baby’s health and wellbeing. All parents can make safe sleep a priority. Babies sleep safest on their backs to help reduce the risk of Sudden Infant Death Syndrome (SIDS). All certified child care providers must be trained in SIDS.
Find out more about your baby’s sleep!
Finding the best child care that meets your family needs is easier than you think. Your local Child Care Resource & Referral is available to help.
How are you feeling about being a new mother? The “baby blues” are very common. Over 50% of new moms feel overwhelmed and anxious. Baby blues usually go away on their own after the first few weeks of being home. Postpartum depression is not the same as “baby blues” and affects about one in ten new moms. You might feel depressed for more than a couple of weeks.
How do I keep my child eating well and staying active?
A healthy mouth and teeth keep our little ones happy and smiling. Oral health is an important part of a child’s overall health and wellness.
Did you know that one of the best ways to protect your children is to make sure they have all of their vaccinations up to date? Keeping your baby healthy from life-threatening diseases is available with free or low-cost immunizations.
All children grow and develop at their own pace but sometimes a child needs extra support to learn and grow. Calumet, Outagamie and Winnebago counties offer many resources for children with developmental concerns or special health care needs. Do you worry about your child’s development? Do you wonder what your child should be doing at a particular age? Help Me Grow -Fox Valley can connect you to resources that provide developmental screenings and support.
The benefits of breastfeeding can keep women and infants healthier, save money and provide a lower risk of obesity and more. An activity so natural should be easy right? Sometimes it takes support to make it work for both mom and baby. You are not alone.
Getting Coronavirus can be scary to children. With media sources reporting daily death totals, children can have exaggerated fears that need accurate information from a trusted adult. Teaching your child how to be safe and healthy during a pandemic is important. Information changes rapidly as new scientific knowledge becomes available.
Ready To Learn
Strengthening your child’s early brain development and readiness to learn involves playful activities and interactions with real people. They need to freely explore, manipulate and interact with their environment. When technology tools such as a TV, movie or game on a digital device are used as a pacifying experience or children are left unattended with the tool, the activity is not supporting a child’s healthy development.
Digital literacy and media technology tools can be effective supports for learning especially assistive technology for children with special needs or dual language learners. Recommendations by NAEYC and the Fred Rogers Center recommends that children younger than 2 should have limited or NO passive use of television, videos, DVDs and other non-interactive technologies and media unless it strengthens the adult-child relationship. Screen time limitations for children ages 2-5 should be focused on interactive activities with media tools that are developmentally appropriate and for short durations.
Every moment in a child’s life is a learning moment. You might think that “learning time” is different than “Play time”, but really it is not! All experiences- both positive and negative are learning experiences. Children learn best when actively engaged in exploring their environments.
Child initiated and developmentally appropriate learning is critical to supporting optimal brain development that will support our ability to learn throughout our entire lifetime.
Talking and reading to a child allows them to experience and engage in language-rich interactions which help children develop communication skills, social skills and readiness to learn. Start reading, singing and talking to your baby from birth. They learn sounds and letters while experiencing the structure of a story or word. Talk to your child-describe what you are doing, look them in the eyes so they pick up non-verbal cues and don’t be afraid to use new and big words to explain or name an object. Through language experiences, children pick up home culture and language in important ways.
All children learn and grow on their own timetable. The individual differences are unique to each person in how we move through developmental milestones. But… development is universal no matter where you are born. Developmental domains are the same everywhere and include:
- large muscle growth such as arms, legs, torso also call “gross motor” skills
- Small muscle growth also called “fine motor” skills- hands, fingers
- Sensorimotor motor- using the senses to move our bodies and learn- hearing, visual, smell & taste, eye-hand coordination, perceptual motor responses
- Reading, Speaking, Writing and Listening
- Self-control, Self-esteem, empathy, temperament, resiliency
- Intellectual growth, problem solving, learning styles, persistence,
- Music, dance, sports, art, imagination, self-expression
Children should have developmental screenings regularly. They are free! Click on the Help Me Grow button to schedule one now.