The Wonder Years

Babies' Brain Development

Brain connections are affected by the experiences that babies are offered whilst very young.  The brain begins to develp in the womb and eventually makes millions of connections.  High contrast displays and interactive resources captivate and hold babies attention and help to develop neural connections in their brains.  Shiny displays give reflective visual experiences. 

During this session we made zip lock bags and clear bottles filled with hair gel, water and shiny objects that the babies can shake, squash, look at and push. 

I set up a heuristic silver themed table at a low level which can be accessed by standing children in our playroom consisting of silver christmas baubles, a silver bowl with rice and silver glitter in, teaspoons, musical instruments, shiny buttons, pearly bracelets, egg cups, water bottles filled with hair gel with the lid glued on and added to the table each day.  All of the children loved exploring, pouring, scooping, dipping, watching and interacting.

Babies' Emotional Development

Attachments with key people are very important at an early age.  Kisses and cuddles and soothing voices settle babies and help to form a bond from which babies learn to trust and thrive.  Consistency of care is important helping babies form a positive self image.  During this session we made photo boxes for our babies with photographs supplied from the family of the baby.

At home I filled my baby's photobox with his favorite toys.  He enjoyed lifting the lid and exploring inside.  We pointed at the photoraphs on the outside of the box naming the people in his family.

Babies' play and laughter

In this session I learned that giving babies the resources and opportunities to laugh, greatly improves their self esteem, brain development and sense of enjoyment.  It helps them to relax, improves their immune system, reduces stress hormones and releases feel good chemicals.  We made painted cardboard tubes in bright colours and mounted them onto cardboard to make a ball run resource.

At home I mounted my ball run activity onto the wall.  I  offered the children a tray containing colourful pom poms, teaspoons, pincers, small plastic balls and stacking cups.  I showed them how to post the pom poms and balls through the colourful tubes and let them fall out the bottom.  We put the stacking cups underneath the tubes, matching up the colours and then dropped the pom poms down the tubes and tried to catch them in the cups.  I played with the children and also let them explore and experiment themselves - hours of fun!


This term we will be looking at:



sea creatures

the deep dark sea

on top of the sea

rock pools

the Queens Jubilee


Cold sea

Warm sea

Sea mammals


The coral reef

4th July



and our topic for this term is:

The Sea

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  Ilana Hill 2012