Early experiences matter: why is a good childhood so important?
By Jacqueline Harding, Parent Channel TV
A good childhood gets into our bones; it forms us; it prepares us for adulthood. It
acts like the foundation for a solid building.
When babies come into the world they are ready and equipped to make
relationships with others. It seems that there is a biological urge for them to
make human connection. In fact, it really does equate to survival. Research tells
us that developmentally speaking babies and children need warm and loving
relationships. Without loving warm relationships, children find it very hard to be
empathetic, to make friends and to be an integrated member of the community.
It maters how they are spoken to; how their needs are met; how they are
responded to when they cry. We know now that the young brain literally lights
up when a caregiver gives them what they need: attention.
Emotional development is critical. It’s tempting to think that education is the
main factor when it comes to achievement in later life. But that’s simply not true.
The defining factor is emotional and social competence and, childhood should
offer bucket loads of supportive emotional structure so that the childhood
foundations are strong.
Early experiences matter. Childhood matters and babies and children need to
know that they matter; they count; they have worth. Human contact and
especially face‐to ‐face contact is essential for wellbeing. We simply can’t
function properly in society without experiencing positive interactions with
Foster carers and adoptive parents have an eye on the child’s future. They
understand that they are putting in the foundations and helping to build a strong
start to the child’s life. It’s quite simply about making everyday count because a
child’s future will count on it.
We do not remember days, we remember moments (Cesare Pavese, 1908‐1950).
Childhood matters. Adoption matters.