How To Stimulate Intelligence: The Critical Years

How To Stimulate Intelligence: The Critical Years

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Having children who are focused and intelligent is what most parents want. They also want their children to be successful and happy as grown-ups. It is what we desire for our children, but not everyone knows about the critical role that parenting plays in a child’s early years, and how to give them the groundwork of security and attention they need in order to develop successfully.


The relationship between early childhood care and intelligence

There is an absolute and concrete relationship between intelligence and early childhood care. Parents can give their kids proper care, so they can raise and develop their potential in the best way possible. According to Jill Stamm, Ph.D., co-founder of the New Directions Institute for Infant Brain Development, it is possible to boost a child’s IQ by as much as 20 to 30 points.


Intelligence Quotient

IQ is not a fixed or objective concept. According to Stamm, IQ depends on genes, physical health, and the environmental experiences that the baby is consistently exposed to. It is also important to emphasize that intelligence can be shaped after birth. According to Howard Gardner, an American developmental psychologist, there are eight different types of intelligences: linguistic, logical/ mathematical, spatial, bodily or kinesthetic, musical, interpersonal, intrapersonal, and naturalist.




ABC is what they need … in their early years

Besides responding to a child’s physical needs, what they need most is attention, bonding, and communication. And they need these things more consistently and earlier than most parents often provide. Providing these three important needs can lead to a higher level of IQ.



According to Stamm, attention refers to the ability to use the brain’s energy to pay attention, which is partly wired as early as age one. However, for a child, maintaining attention is no easy task. In order to develop a child’s attention system, here are a few tips:

  • Give them frequent face-to-face time
  • Make a lot of eye contact during the day
  • Point out the objects and label them

Introducing a “Placemat” to the child is also a good idea for attention development. Using a mat, parents can encourage the baby to focus on where the activity will be held. The placemat should be plain colors (no colorful patterns), or else the child’s attention goes to the colors, not to the activity that is provided. In this way, every time the child sees their parent is bringing the placemat, they will know that there is a fun, interesting activity waiting for them. In this way, you are priming the child for their full attention.

In a car, it is also very beneficial if parents limit the amount of time when their baby is strapped into a car seat. It lessens their range of vision to what’s directly in front of them, which makes it difficult to orient sounds that are coming from either side. Instead, they can try to take the child out when they decide to take a walk, hold the child often, carry the child on their hip, in a side sling, or a carrier seat. In this way, the child has many chances to use his natural inclination to shift attention and follow his head.

Another method for guiding attention is “no-tech time” for their family and not letting their children be exposed to any kind of screen playing such as computers or TV. These all also help children to improve their attention system.



Bonding refers to the ongoing relationship of attachment between a child and their caregiver. According to Stamm, the baby is counting on more than the food and warmth his parents provide. They cannot yet control their own feelings very well, and so, they need help to stay emotionally in balance. Children need to regulate these emotional states so that they don’t overwhelm their system.

As stated by Dr. Stamm, when parents respond to the baby’s practical and emotional needs consistently, the baby starts to form a sense of trust. Trust develops children’s intellectual potential (and how well he does in school), language development, self-control, the ability to cope with stress, and the ability to make and sustain future relationships.

For bonding improvement, parents can hold their baby during feeding and establish the habit of lap reading together. They also can encourage skin-to-skin contact and respond quickly when their baby cries. It is important to know that “In a minute” can sound like “never” to a young child.

All infants need one person in the first moments of crying. Repetitive waitings for basic needs only give them stress. It also might have some negative effects on their brain and cause some learning problems in the early years of school.



Communication refers to the development of the language system and language skills. It includes understanding speech, learning to talk, and activities that will later influence learning to read. All babies learn language starting at birth based on what they are exposed to.

Hanging photos for them to look at while in the crib, the carriage, or on the floor can encourage early visual development. Introducing music at different times of the day, singing simple songs, asking basic questions, and encouraging them to participate in the conversations are other ways that parents can enhance their child’s communication skills.

Parents can make some facial expressions while reading a book and hold their kids close to themselves. It is also important to talk to children!

The importance of play in the early childhood years

Play is crucial to physical, intellectual, and social-emotional development. The best form of play is the unstructured, self-motivated, imaginative, and independent, where infants start their own games and even invent their own games.

Through play, children can learn how to communicate and what to expect, and this may improve their social and emotional abilities. Within the play, they will also stimulate and promote their early brain development. For them, play would be compared to work.

There are ways to make raising a smart child easier through the points that were stated above. Jerome Everett Singer, an American psychologist said: “The activities that are the easiest, cheapest, and most fun to do–such as singing, playing games, reading, storytelling, and just talking and listening–are also the best for child development.”

Your second life might start if you “Follow Your Heart”!

Your second life might start if you “Follow Your Heart”!

A review of Andrew Matthews’s book

Looking back at 2020, we can all say that we went through lots of worries and difficulties. We were afraid of what the future might bring us. Fortunately, I read this book in those months. While reading, I realized that even in the most stressful days of my life, I must try to advance my thoughts and feelings.

If you feel the same, maybe you want to give it a chance and read it. This article is here to introduce a book that is perfect to enlighten your life.

Who is Andrew Matthews?

Andrew Matthews is an Australian author and speaker. According to his site, he has published his books in 47 languages and addressed over 1000 international corporations in happiness, well-being, and prosperity. He also appeared on over 5000 radio and TV programs.

He gives you a better understanding of your life and your relationships. He also shows you some new ideas of thinking, those you can use to be happier and healthier. 

“Follow Your Heart” has ten chapters, and it talks about over three original concepts of well-being in each chapter. One of the biggest strengths of this book is that it is easy to digest. 

Dedicate Time to Your Soul

Give fifteen minutes per day to Andrew Matthews and start an incredible journey with him. Listen to his practical advice with all of your heart. I assure you he will inspire you, and you will change at least some of your beliefs or thoughts after finishing this book.

What does the book talk about?

“Follow Your Heart” will show you a new horizon and engage you in lots of thinking. There are dozens of ingenious messages and useful advice waiting for you to consider and use.

It also talks about that you are enough, even with all of your flaws. The only thing you need to do is to embrace the changes and be happy with the existence of your challenges. Working on your weaknesses can strengthen you.

We are continuously being presented with small challenges which we must learn to overcome. “Unless we learn the lessons, we get to take them again… again… and again.” (Matthews, 1997. p16).  Accepting the full responsibility for our obstacles will make this growth process smoother and more pleasant. Our problems are our treasures, which can bring us spiritual growth. 

Matthews covers some significant concepts like the subconscious, the miracle of gratitude and peace of mind, passion, the secret of power, luck, family and forgiveness, and love and fear are other concepts that Andrew brought you with his interesting methods of writing.

Individual’s stories

The author suggests that even though we all have a story, we are not defined by them. We do not belong to a particular category. We can change the narrative of our lives if we are feeling unhappy with the direction we are going in.

He believes we can deal with our problems reasonably. If we are not happy with what we do, there are always jobs out there that belong to us. We can earn money and love what we do at the same time. Matthews teaches us to be comfortable with money, and to enjoy what we have in life. Thus, there is a chapter that helps us understand more about the benefit of the detachment of money, lovers, etc.

The school of life

Hard work is necessary to our growth. There is almost no way out of it. It is important to learn how to navigate the ups and downs of our lives. Life can be compared to school, which means that as long as you are breathing, the class is in session. 


Matthews, A. (1997). Follow Your Heart. Seashell publishers. Lessons. Pp.16.

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