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Inspiring REAL Brain Development For All Young Children
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braininsights is dedicated to creating a broad awareness and understanding of the importance of early brain development.
Issue: #16     

Brains Need

REAL Activities 


October, 2011


As a result of the latest recommendation from the American Acadamy of Pediatrics there has been a lot of discussion about the use of electronics with young children.  And I can not be more pleased
that this is getting attention! 

There are many that see value in using electronic devices for learning early. There are also large numbers of people that are very opposed to children being introduced to electronics at young ages. The APP recommends no TV for children younger than the age of two.

The recommendation states:
"media-both foreground and background-have potentially negative effects and no known positive effects for children younger than 2 years."
For more detail read: Babies and Toddlers Should Learn from Play, Not Screens

The reason I created, Braininsights, is because most adults do not yet know all that is best for developing brains. Marketing has convinced many parents that DVD's and flashcard programs are good for brain development. It is my passion create the understanding that this is not the way brains learn best. It is my goal to inspire REAL brain development!

In this issue, I have included several articles and very valuable resources on the use of electronics and the importance of play for you. With all of this information I sincerely hope we can make a positive impact for the healthy development of ALL children!  

Thank you as always for being a friend and supporter of braininsights!



Deborah McNelis

Owner and Creator of braininsights


Did you know....?
baby watching tv

..... TV and videos affect a child's developing attention span.

..... A recent study has shown, activity increases between important brain areas when people have more control over their learning environment,  compared to those who are passively absorbing information.


..... One study found, Babies who watch TV are more likely to have delayed cognitive development and language at 14 months.  


..... Research found,in families with annual incomes under $30,000, 64 percent of children under 8 had televisions in their rooms.  


.... Rough and tumble play helps to coordinate the higher thinking areas of the brain. 

Tell everyone you know!! 

Brains need REAL Activities, Interaction and Play!


Due to all I know about how the brain learns best, electronic devices do not provide optimal learning experiences. Research clearly demonstrates that play and interactive experiences are the way to have a direct and very positive impact on healthy brain development.

baby playingFrom birth brains are ready and eager to learn. Through opportunities to explore, touch, taste, smell, hear, poke, pound, pour, manipulate, pretend, and throw, children directly experience and learn about the world. This is real learning and this is what developing brains need most.

Through "hands on" experiences young children find out how things work. Through play children find out they can make things happen and they have an effect on their world. When children interact with family members or friends they have the chance to develop social skills. Outdoor activity has been found to not only help develop physical abilities, but nature and movement greatly enhance healthy brain growth as well.boy and ball

A young child will not learn how a ball bounces and rolls if he only experiences balls through a computer game. He also will not know how to throw or kick a ball when watching a video or television show. When children are using electronic toys and games, this is a missed opportunity for real learning and strong connections being made in the brain.

It is critically important of course that this begins early. Infants who are spending large amounts of time watching TV or DVDs are wiring their brains for this type of activity. Children who instead have learned through play early are going to not only have healthier brains but will also benefit greatly from more advanced learning opportunities, advanced games and physical activity as they grow.

We all need to ensure children have LOTS of time for unstructured play, to move, interact with others, and spend time outdoors, and explore in nature. For healthy and smart children, this is needed both at home and school.




Following are articles, websites, and books to provide additional interesting and valuable information:   



New Report Warns Against Screen Time for Young Children  

The Globe and Mail

Study: Too much TV, games for kids = shorter attention span  


US News and World Report

TIME Health

Science Daily

Important Articles:


Star Tribune

Parents use smartphones as high-tech pacifiers for toddlers; 'Yeah, but we had a nice dinner'


Huffington Post- Education  


New York Times 


REALLY Great Resource for Parents:     


Screen Time App      (Parents you will love this!)



VERY Valuable Books: 


Moving to Learn by Robyn Crowe and Gill Connell

The Art of Roughhousing by Anthony DeBenedet


FABULOUS Blogs and Websites:   



Campaign for a Commercial-Free Childhood


Shaping Youth   

If you are a parent or a professional working with children and families, you can get activity ideas on how to easily incorporate loving interactions into a daily routine and learn hoefits brain development by visiting for The Brain Development Series.  
Your organization or workplace will also benefit from learning more about the brain. To arrange a presentation
 that fits your needs, contact Deborah at


Announcing: the NEW   

Brain Insights App!!!     

Love Your Baby is now available as an App! 

(click here to get yours)


It is the easiest and most inexpensive way to help busy new parents! 

Very honored to be a guest on
Inspired Children - Radio in Australia
with Dr. Rosina.
Listen to Episode #16 and all of her shows! 


What a review! 

Huge Thanks go to Vivien Sable! 

Independent Review  

author of The Blossom Method™ - A revolutionary parenting/baby book (publication date June 2012). UKCP Registered Psychotherapist, Clinical Supervisor & Researcher.



The SPANISH version of The Brain Development Activity Packet Series is also available!    


  * You can receive insights delivered directly to your email inbox.  Sign up here to receive blog logo
updates from the braininsights blog.

is the newest brain activity packet. It provides activities to use with pre-schoolers and information on the benefits of nature for the brain. Proceeds go toward nature pre-school efforts.
Your program can also use these as a
fund raiser while promoting
nature learning!

Nature packet cover 


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