About Child’ Space and Dr. Chava Shelhav
Babies are beautiful, and the early time of bonding between parents and children can be magical, joyous and mutually satisfying. It is during this time that babies first learn about themselves, their bodies, and people and objects around them.
It is important to understand that babies do not learn in isolation. The relationship between parents and babies provides a context in which learning can take place. Parents and caregivers provide safety, stimulation and emotional regulation that are essential to development. Parental involvement–listening and observing as well as doing–helps establish a rich and safe environment for a baby to learn, and helps deepen bonding and relationship.
- Child’Space lessons provide a foundation for parents to develop intuition and trust their judgment in relating to their babies:
- Child’Space guides parents in the language of early development, demonstrating how speech, facial expression, touch, movement, rhythm and song can help a baby by stimulating primary developmental pathways.
- Child’Space gives parents a unique perspective on the developmental stages that empowers parents to offer new learning opportunities that build on a baby’s current activities, interests, and abilities.
- Child’Space teaches parents how to provide the missing ingredients for babies to roll, crawl and sit in a way that empowers both the baby and the parents.
- Body mapping is an example of a Child’Space technique used with all babies at all stages of development. A baby learns about his body through movement and touch. Sensory nerve endings send messages via the nervous system to create maps in the baby’s brain of the body and its relationship to the environment. Body mapping is the deliberate use of this principle to help a baby learn. It includes such traditional cultural practices as counting a baby’s fingers and toes. Parents and caregivers learn to teach a baby about his body parts through voice, vision, and various forms of touch. This technique is important because babies’ abilities to balance themselves, to move and even to speak and think can improve dramatically as a result of their being able to feel their own body parts more clearly.
- Parental involvement helps babies develop because each problem a baby faces can be addressed as it arises rather than delayed awaiting chance or some future intervention. Early intervention helps babies psychologically, reducing factors that might otherwise lead to patterns of avoidance and compensation.
- By knowing when to help and when to let their babies solve problems for themselves, parents encourage their children to develop independence and self confidence.
- By facilitating parents’ involvement in their babies’ early learning, Child’Space enriches the relationship, and increases parental confidence.