BRAIN FACT: Physical Activity Enhances Brain Function Through Increased Oxygen To The Brain

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Physical activity enhances brain function through providing more oxygen to the brain.

A recent study reveals new information on fitness and the teen brain.  Click here to read an article on the study.

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BRAIN FACT: Freely Exploring Nature and Objects Increase Blood Flow To Parts Of The Brain

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Opportunities for children to freely explore objects and nature provides rich learning. Blood flow to parts of the brain increases through exploration.

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BRAIN FACT: Young Children Need Adults to Help Them Deal With Emotions

Monday, June 28, 2010

Young children need the adults in their life to help them deal with big emotions. It is too much for an undeveloped brain to handle emotion on it's own.

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BRAIN FACT: Research Indicates that Playing In the Dirt May Stimulate Further Learning And Less Stress For the Brain

Friday, June 25, 2010

Nature provides many brain benefits. Research is indicating playing in dirt may stimulate further learning and less stress for the brain.

More information on this research is available here and here.

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Photo Credit: Shay Blufarb

BRAIN FACT: Our Brains Are Good At Being Flexible, Learning From Experience, and Adapting To Different Situations

Thursday, June 24, 2010

"What our brains are good at is being flexible, learning from experience and adapting to different situations."

~ Giulio Tononi, professor of psychiatry at the UW-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health. Click here for more information.    

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BRAIN FACT: We Learn Best Through Pictures

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

"We learn and remember best through pictures, not through written or spoken words."

     ~ From: Brain Rules by John Medina  

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PRENATAL BRAIN FACT: A Baby's Brain at 35 Weeks Gestation Weighs Only 2/3 Of What It Will Weigh at 40 Weeks

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

A baby's brain at 35 weeks gestation weighs only two-thirds of what it will weigh at 40 weeks gestation (full term).

For more information on this topic visit the March of Dimes.

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BRAIN FACT: If You Feel Something Emotionally The Brain Is More Likely To Learn Or Remember From The Experience

Monday, June 21, 2010

If we feel something emotionally our brain is more likely to remember or learn from the experience.

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BRAIN FACT: Reading A Book While Holding A Child Contributes To Brain Growth In Many Ways

Friday, June 18, 2010

Reading a book while holding a child, contributes to brain growth in many ways.  Brain connections are made through visual stimulation, the opportunity to hear direct language, and from close physical contact.

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BRAIN FACT: The easiest time for the brain to learn a second language is in the first five years

Thursday, June 17, 2010

The easiest time for the brain to learn a second language is in the first five years of life.

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BRAIN FACT: Daily Massage Can Decrease Aggression In Preschool Children

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

A recent research study concluded, “Daily touching by massage lasting for 5–10 min could be an easy and inexpensive way to decrease aggression among preschool children.”

More information can be found here.
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BRAIN FACT: It Is Very Difficult For the Brain To Read And Listen to Someone At The Same Time

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

It is very difficult for the brain to read and listen to someone at the same time. The brain can only pay attention to one thing at a time.

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Monday, June 14, 2010

I received a wonderful e-mail recently with a comment stating the value of the brain facts for sharing with parents. She stated that as a result of the brain facts she finds herself looking for specific resources due to her interested in learning more.

I have had other curious followers ask for additional information also. It is so great to hear of the continuously growing interest to share brain information. As you know, it is the goal of braininsights to make this common knowledge. Every time this information is shared by people like you we move closer to the reality of having everyone understand the positive impact we can have toward healthy brains!

The brain facts I post are based on scientific research but do not always come from any one specific source. They are general basic brain information that are now known and understood about the brain. These are bits of information that have resulted from scientific research over the last several years.

My idea is to try to share this information in little quick bits since people do not often have a lot of extra time during their busy day to read much more than this. These posts are also meant to be easy to post or tell others in an effort to spread the word.

However, I sure understand the interest in wanting to learn more. So, what I have done in response to people that are looking for more information is put a resource tab on the blog. This way when people do have time to read, or go to websites for further information, a resource list is available.

As a result of the question, I will also begin doing something new. In addition to the brain fact each day, I will periodically post a specific article, study, etc. for those who would like more new information as it comes out. Additionally, the article on the monthly newsletter includes resources for further information. Hopefully all of this will be helpful to you!

Again, I so appreciate you taking the time to contact me. It has given me the opportunity to better provide what is beneficial to you and others making a difference for children and families every day!

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BRAIN FACT: Watching TV Does Not Provide The Type of Experience That is Beneficial To The Brain

Direct interaction with objects and people provides optimal brain development.  Watching television does not provide the type of experience that is beneficial to the brain.

More information on this topic can be found here.       

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BRAIN FACT: A Baby Will Give Signals Of An Over Stimulated Brain

Friday, June 11, 2010

When an infant becomes over stimulated, the baby will give signs to say, "This is too much for my undeveloped brain to handle."  Signals of over stimulation might be, hiccups, yawning, turning head away, closing eyes, clasping hands together, or whimpering.

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Photo Credit: Nino Satria

BRAIN FACT: Even Short Amounts Of Time Looking At Nature Improves Brain Performance

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Even short amounts of time, glimpses of nature, or even looking at photos of natural environments improves brain performance.

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BRAIN FACT: Brains Of Children Who Experience Little Touch Or Play Develop Brains That Are 20%-30% Smaller

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

When children experience little touch or lack the opportunity for play their brains develop 20% - 30% smaller than normal for their age.

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BRAIN FACT: All Children Need Nutrition, Stimulation, And Loving Interaction To Develop Healthy Brains

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

All children need nutrition, stimulation, and loving interaction to develop healthy brains. When these experiences are not provided brain development can be impaired.

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Monday, June 7, 2010

Check out the June issue of the braininsights newsletter here.  This month's issue focuses on Summer Fun and the Brain.

View past newsletters or sign up to have the free newsletter delivered to your inbox here.

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Attachment and Early Brain Development

Anyone that has heard me present knows how I emphasize the critical importance of attachment.  This is an essential aspect of optimal brain development. As I often point out, it not only affects social/emotional development, behavior, and relationships, it also has an impact on cognitive development.

The body and the brain will not grow if there is an absence of touch. Through consistent and loving interactions, valuable connections will be made in the baby’s brain.  The feeling of security and predictability that the child learns through these interactions leads to an emotionally healthy child.

With my first granddaughter’s birth only a few weeks away I am looking forward to observing the secure attachment she will have with my daughter and son-in-law. They have a birth plan to have skin to skin time, also called Kangaroo Care, with her right after birth.

Yesterday I became aware of a wonderful post , written by Danielle Elwood, on Momotics. This blog post very clearly shares the value of this important and special time. As a result I just had to share this wonderful post.  Enjoy and share with others. As Danielle states it is important that this is practiced in all hospitals. Spread the word!

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BRAIN FACT: Learning A New Skill Provides Greater Benefits For the Brain

Continuing to do an activity, sport, or hobby that is well learned is good for your brain. However, learning a new technique or something completely new and different provides even greater benefits.

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BRAIN FACT: The Brain Eliminates Rarely Used Brain Connections

Friday, June 4, 2010

In and effort to work more efficiently, the brain eliminates rarely used brain connections and strengthens connections that are used frequently. Between early childhood and adolescence it can loose billions of connections a day.

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BRAIN FACT: The Brain Is Never As Malleable As It Is In The Early Years

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Even though the brain is continuously changing and making new connections throughout life, it is never as malleable as it is in the early years.

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BRAIN FACT: Neurons Can Make Over 40,000 Connection In The Thinking Area Of The Brain

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

In the" thinking area" of the brain, neurons have the possibility of making over 40,000 connections.

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BRAIN FACT: The Brain Prunes Away Or Eliminates Connections That Are Not Used Frequently

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

The brain prunes away or eliminates connections that are not used frequently. It uses a "use it or lose it" process.

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