Research has shown that 80 percent of brain development happens in the first three years of life. A child’s environment during these years has long-term impacts on their learning ability, decision-making, and other life skills. As a result, gaps emerge between socio-economic, racial, and ethnic groups. The good news is that simple day-to-day interactions and activities during the first three years can help ensure children receive a jumpstart at life, said officials.
Members of Chattanooga 2.0’s Early Childhood Coalition have launched the Chattanooga Basics in order to raise awareness and provide parents and caretakers with resources to level the playing field and give every child in the community a great start.
The Chattanooga Basics are five evidence-based principles that can benefit children from all backgrounds, said officials. By combining forces with existing nonprofits and community leaders, Chattanooga Basics has the potential to increase the number of kids who enter kindergarten ready to learn.
Help a child be ready to learn by trying the Basics in everyday life:
1. Maximize love, manage stress. (ex. Hug children and tell them you are proud of them)
2. Talk, sing and point. (ex. Point to objects as you say the name.)
3. Count, group, compare. (ex. Use math words like more, less, big, short, tall, round, square.)
4. Explore through movement and play. (ex. Allow children to run and climb every day.)
5. Read and discuss stories. (ex. Read with children 20 minutes a day.)
Learn more details about the Basics, watch videos, find example activities, and see a full
list of partnering organizations at www.ChattanoogaBasics.com. Follow Chattanooga Basics on
Facebook (@ChattanoogaBasics) and Twitter (@ChattBasics). Join the conversation using
#ChaBasics and #5toThrive.