Cognitive development is characterized by the way the child learns, acquires knowledge and interacts with the environment.
Different cognitive skills are acquired when the child reaches a certain stage of development, but for the baby all skills will be useful for activities that promote learning.
Everyone can encourage the child’s cognitive development, especially the parents, in areas of memory, concentration and attention, incorporating simple actions into everyday life.
Here are 10 simple ways to stimulate the child’s cognitive development:
1. Sing for a long time
Sing songs with your child and encourage him to sing along with you. Listen to your favorite songs at home in the car so he can start singing by himself. This activity helps to promote memory and word identification.
2. Noise determination
Ask your child to identify the sounds he or she hears during the day (e.g. the sound of birds, a car beep, running water or sink). He’ll begin to understand how sounds relate to objects in his everyday environment.
3. Practice of the alphabet
Help the child identify letters by singing together, reading books about the alphabet and playing with puzzles with the alphabet.
Here is an example of a simple game to help your child learn his cards:
Cut out the individual squares with each letter of the alphabet, written in bright colors.
Mix and place on various surfaces of the house.
Speak a letter of the child’s alphabet and ask her to look it up. When you find it, put it in order, and as soon as you are done, the letters of the alphabet will be in order ready to play again.
4. Practical calculation
Determine the opportunities during the day to practice counting. Count the number of shoes in your child’s closet when he is putting on or the number of slides in the playground when you go to the park.
5. Practice of shapes and colors
Identify forms and colors when interacting with your child. You can say “This is a round blue ball” when you play in the backyard. As you get older, you can ask him to describe things to you.
When you can, offer your children a choice: “Would you like to wear brown shorts or blue pants?” Or “You want cheese or yogurt?” This will help you feel more independent and learn to make decisions that affect your confidence in your day.
7. Ask questions
Another way to help your child learn to think for himself is to ask him, “Which toy should we choose first when we clean the room? Or, “Why is it important to walk down the stairs slowly?” The questions asked help you learn how to solve problems and better understand how the environment works.
8. Visit interesting places
Travel to the local children’s museum, library or farmers’ market to stimulate your curiosity and provide a “hands-on” experience. Ask questions as he explores and hear his answers and reactions. These adventures can provide a learning experience.
9. Play with everyday objects
Playing with everyday household utensils is educational, fun and economical. Encourage the child to combine hats of different sizes or look in the mirror and point at the nose, mouth, eyes, etc.
10. Offer a variety of games
Play a variety of games with your child to encourage problem solving and creativity. If your child is younger, you can create blocks and play games. With age, you can engage him in board games, puzzles, and play “hide and seek.