Did you know? a child’s brain goes through a remarkable development period from birth to age three.
Here are some interesting facts you should know
- The first five (particularly the first three years) of a child’s life are the most important stages of their development. It is during these first five years that the brain’s development and functioning are formed.
- Between the ages of 1-2 years old, the cerebral cortex of a toddler adds over 2 million new synapses per second! By the time they turn two, they have over 100 trillion synapses – the most that they will ever have in their lives. By the time a child reaches adulthood, over 50% of those synapses will be gone.
- Between the ages of 3-8 years old, a child’s brain tissue uses twice as much energy as that of adult brain tissue. For instance, a 5-year-old child that weighs 44 pounds would require 860 calories per day — half of that energy goes to their brain.
- Approximately 40,000 new synapses are added per second to a baby’s brain just before and after birth.
- By their first birthday, a baby’s brain reaches 70% of its adult size. By the time they turn two, it reaches 80%.
- By the time a child reaches kindergarten, their brain will have reached its full size. However, it won’t stop developing until they are in their mid-20s. Even then, their brain will never stop changing.
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- Aamodt, Sandra, Ph.D., and Sam Wang, Ph.D. Welcome to Your Child’s Brain: How the Mind Grows from Conception to College. New York, NY: Bloomsbury, 2011.
- Mooney, Carol Garhart. Theories of Childhood: An Introduction to Dewey, Montessori, Erikson, Piaget, & Vygotsky. St. Paul, MN: Redleaf Press, 2000.