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The Ins and Outs of Cognitive Development

August 20th, 2015 | 1 min. read

By Jenna Roby

Cognitive development in infants is a critical component of caring for young children.


Cognitive development in infants is a critical component of caring for young children. From holding to cuddling and "Baby Talk," baby brain development is significantly improved with parents and caregivers who focus on cognitive development in infants. A focus on brain development in infants not only leads to more cognitive activities for infants, but paves the way to continuing with toddler brain games.

Physical connections are what start these cognitive sparks, according to Jackie Silberg, author of 125 Brain Games for Babies: Simple games to promote early brain development.

Try one of her simple activities below and watch those sparks fly!


Bend Those Knees

Birth to 3 months

What brain research says: 

Strengthening your baby's thigh muscles is important for future crawling and walking.

1. Place you baby on her back and carefully pull both legs until they are straight.

2. When her legs are straight, lightly tap the bottoms of her feet.

3. She will point her toes downward and bend her knees.

4. As you do this game, sing the following to the tune of "Ring Around the Rosy":

Bending, bending, bending

Little knees are bending

Bending, bending

Hip hooray!

5. End a rhyme with some kind of a cheer. Your baby will learn to anticipate it, and it makes the game more exciting.


Choo Choo Train

3 to 6 months

What brain research says:

Dramatic speech encourages emotional expression in babies. This in turn activates the brain to release chemicals that help memory.

1. As you say the following rhyme, move your fingers up your baby's arm and back down again:

Choo choo train, choo choo train

Going up the track.

Toot, toot, toot, toot

Now it's coming back.

2. Repeat for the other arm.

3. Be dramatic with the word "toot" and soon your baby will be trying to make that sound.


From 125 Brain Games for Babies.

Author(s)Jackie Silberg

Jenna Roby

A graduate of High Point University, Jenna Roby served as marketing specialist for Gryphon House from 2013-2015.