How to Improve Your Child’s Cognitive Skills
January 5, 2016 12:00 AM EST | 5 min read
A child’s brain needs a stimulating environment in which it can develop.
Through their daily activities and explorations, children satisfy their curiosities.
Children have the most dynamic curiosity that helps them learn about the world.
Parents need to create a healthy and engaging environment so that children can develop their cognitive skills.
Since most children learn through play, parents can target particular mental recourses through different games and toys.
Ultimately, this will provide a fun experience for your children and develop their cognitive domains at the same time.
How To Develop The Cognitive Skills In Children
A loving environment impacts cognitive development in children
Providing a loving environment is an essential factor in the cognitive growth of your children.
An attentive environment with both physical and verbal expressions of love will create an ideal atmosphere for the development of your child’s emotional skills and build a solid bond between you and your child.
This boosts their self-confidence and gives them a chance to focus their attention on other aspects of development since they do not have to waste time searching for approval and love.
Also, through kisses, hugs, massages, and general touch, kids get to know how to express affection and successfully use body language as means of communication.
Exercise the body for intellectual development
Exercise is important for brain development, and, therefore, cognitive thinking.
Through exercise and physical activity, children oxygenate the brain more rapidly and this helps it grow.
Furthermore, through the development of their motor skills, they establish better synaptic connections that help in a quicker brain to muscle nerve response.
Getting outdoors enables fresh air intake and provides a healthier environment for physical growth.
However, swimming is the best exercise of all, since it incorporates all muscle groups.
A good night’s sleep positively impacts the cognitive ability in children
Sleep helps the brain recharge and process all the information acquired during each day.
A child needs eight to ten hours of good, quality sleep in order to regenerate and energize itself.
The time right before bedtime should be utilized by parents to focus on the positive events of the day and assertive ways of showing affection.
This will create a sense of well-being, resulting in positive dreams that spark imagination and creativity.
Healthy food helps cognitive function
Healthy brain development requires healthy food.
Parents should provide their children with a versatile and nutritious diet, which incorporates fresh produce, meat, and dairy products.
Foods rich in protein are essential for growing brains by letting the brain gain more mass.
Moreover, Omega-3 fats (found in fish, nuts, and eggs) help in concentration, knowledge acquisition, and logical thinking.
So, incorporating them into your child’s diet will certainly help in their cognitive development.
If you’re enjoying this article, you might also like our collection of motivational quotes for kids about school, life, and success.
Fun is a key ingredient for cognitive development
Kids learn most about the world around them through play.
Almost all activities can help in some aspects of cognitive development.
Parents can provide their children with different toys and teach children various games to target specific cognitive development.
This can include developing any manner of skills: from language, concentration, creativity, logical and abstract thinking, to physical skills such as hand-eye coordination, special awareness, and motor functions.
- Memory games help in the development of short and long-term memory. Apart from that, they have practical implications as they can improve all three learning methods (visual, auditory, and kinesthetic). Verbal and picture memory games, puzzles, and pantomimes all help in improving memory skills.
- Word and number games, such as Sudoku games and crossword puzzles, help in improving your child’s logical thinking, pattern recognition, and refine language skills. Also, these simple games provide a way for a child to expand its vocabulary and adapt to a symbolic way of thinking. Sudoku and crosswords also have health benefits, since they minimize the chance of dementia and Alzheimer’s disease.
- Reading is another activity that improves cognitive development. Through stories, children can improve their imagination and visualization skills. Additionally, the reading process itself helps them in language acquisition and bettering their verbal skills. It is important for parents to provide their children with age-appropriate books. Their first set of books should have lots of colors and pictures in order to draw attention and spark interest so that later on your child will want to pick up books by itself. Reading books also top watching films, as they are more engaging and demand greater mental recourses.
- Music is another way of helping develop cognitive skills in children. Listening to music is a great method of stress-relief and it creates a positive and toxic-free environment in which the brain can grow properly. Playing musical instruments is an emotionally stimulating way of developing coordination and imagination. The most engaging instruments for children are the drums, keyboards, and the piano because they develop both hemispheres of the brain in equal measure, through coordinated use.
- Today’s technological advancements have provided several means of children improving their cognitive abilities, mainly through child-friendly computer games. Online math and word games are an interactive source of learning by enabling parents to participate as well. And, since most of them are time-based, they develop quick thinking, rapid memory retrieval, and improved decision making and reaction speed.
In the end, it is important to note that children are bursting with potential.
When providing an engaging and stimulating environment, parents will help their child’s cognitive development by challenging them for the world ahead.
What other effective techniques have worked for you when working towards increasing the cognitive skills in children?
Tell us in the comment section below!
June 14, 2018 at 6:16 AM
Thank you for this inspiring article. Almost every night, my children and I state 3 things that we are feeling grateful for. These positive thoughts are wonderful thoughts to sleep with!
June 22, 2019 at 10:18 AM
Very good and informative article. I feel a loving and secure environment for the kids is the most essential and foremost requirement. The rest follows.