There are several practical techniques for early childhood stimulation that help to promote intellectual development, physical and mental skills in pre-school children. Almost all methods of sensory or intellectual stimulation employ some type of stimulation based on one or more of the five senses. One of the most effective methods involves stimulation of the visual senses in a variety of ways. Audio or hearing stimulation is also a strong method used during early childhood that can achieve significant results in pre-school aged children.
Early Childhood Development: The Five Senses
Among the theories predominant in intellectual development and learning, the theory of multiple intelligences is one of the most frequently and extensively applied. Parents who want to accelerate or promote mental and sensory development ion their children can always rely on the use of games and playing. For example, using the sense of touch to give the child experience with a variety of textures, or changes in temperature are simple, safe ways to stimulate a child’s sensory experiences. Taste is stimulated by experiencing a range of different flavors. Colors and flashing lights on toys or other play objects are likewise ways of effecting substantial stimulation in early childhood skills and sensory development. Physical stimulation using motion and moving objects including rolling, bouncing, flopping or tumbling toys and objects can also be highly effective.
Early Childhood Development: Audio Stimulation Techniques
Parents and caregivers of young learners can use stimulants such as noise makers to activate audio senses. Nature sounds or environmental sounds recordings played to children are gentle but effective audio input that greatly help with early childhood stimulation. Another frequently used method for neural stimulation includes playing classical music selections in the background while the child is doing other things including during their “nap time”. Beethoven, Brahms and Mozart especially, are classical music composers often used for this purpose. While the music is relaxing, it’s also able to activate multiple areas of a child’s brain. Surprisingly, smooth jazz (vocals) has been found to be an excellent auditory stimulant for young learners in a broad range of situations. New age (Kitaro) music can likewise be an effective stimulant as an aid to early childhood development. In addition, many children love noise makers from banging on empty pots and pans or shaking rattles, tooting whistles and horns to extracting sound from musical instruments of all kinds. It may be nerve-wracking to parents and siblings, but is essential to the child’s development.
Pre-Natal Stimulation in Early Childhood Development
Not only pre-school aged children can benefit from sensory stimulation but forms of pre-natal stimulation can also be effective. Ways to introduce this can include:
• Playing soft, low-volume music through headphones placed 180 degrees apart against the mother’s skin
• Talking or reading to the unborn child
• Gentle massages
Important Note: Before engaging in any of these or other techniques, parents or care-givers should consult with their obstetrician or pediatrician.
Benefits of Early Childhood Development through Sensory Stimulation
Any of the aforementioned areas can be successfully used as an effective means of early childhood stimulation to promote intellectual and sensory development in pre-school age children. Proving this stimulation allows the brain to develop more extensively and at a faster rate than non-stimulated children. This early childhood stimulation will give the child a developmental advantage over other children of the same age or level in more than 85% of cases. Such early-developed children ultimately do better in school, integrate better with peers, siblings and parents, they also tend to be happier and better adjusted overall according to numerous clinical studies. Teachers at the pre-school and primary school levels also note a higher level of social and educational integration among children who have had some type of early development stimulation.