They say that the fascinating process of learning is an unending one, and that the start we make in our mothers’ wombs is one that continues till our final day on earth. So you can start your precious little bundle off on the journey of discovery and education right from the time that you know he or she exists.
Pictures on the walls
Pictures hung on the nursery walls can show different colors, friendly faces, even letters of the alphabet, which the baby can slowly learn from.
Over time he or she becomes familiar with the different colors and will be able to differentiate them though to begin with he or she cannot match the name Orange to the color orange.
Alphabets are already familiar to baby from seeing them on the walls and so don’t present as much of a challenge later when baby starts play school.
Pictures or colorful charts of different animals and birds, fruit and veggies can help a baby become familiar with these everyday items and inculcate curiosity and even a desire to learn and find out more about them.
Even a large map placed on the wall can be fascinating for an older baby, who will quickly grasp the concept to the world. You can change the pictures and charts to be more age appropriate as and when your baby outgrows them.
Reading and speaking to baby
Most parents start to talk gently to their baby and many also start to read to baby well before he or she makes an appearance into the world. Reading to and directly interacting with baby is one of the best, most stimulating and most enjoyable activities for a baby.
Seeing a dear face nearby is reassuring, watching the face speak and emote is engaging and hearing the beloved voice is enthralling for a little baby. Reading and talking to baby makes baby more familiar with language and more aware of it, so that he or she will learn more quickly and readily.
Though there are those who question the value of music in creating geniuses, there is some evidence to show that music can help a baby’s developing brain and that this process can start even before birth. Exposing a baby to music from very early on can foster creativity and in cases soft soothing music can even help baby sleep better.
While musical mobiles help to soothe and lull a baby to rest and sleep, others can be stimulating and assist in learning. The very small infant learns to follow the movement of the mobile as it goes round and round above the baby’s crib, helping improve visual focus and differentiation of objects.
The slightly older infant will learn to reach for it, and then to feel and enjoy the different textures, exploring and examining each new touch, sound, taste and feeling.
Either consciously or subconsciously, a baby is constantly imbibing and learning from everything around. Creating a rich sensory environment that stimulates and interests him or her, can make him or her more open to and interested in learning.