We are living in challenging, unprecedented times. The hour-to-hour uncertainty of the Covid 19 Pandemic has created stress for families around the globe. We are “Sheltering in Place”, schools have been closed and parents are working from home.

In adversity there is creativity and before us there is a golden opportunity for families to share valuable time together.

From its onset, Three Key Years was created to educate parents, families, educators, policy makers, and community leaders about how important positive, direct interaction with a child in his or her first three years is to building a strong brain for life.

As we all adjust to this new way of life, we are full of questions. Now, more than ever, we hope to be a resource for you. Check out our Parent Toolkit and information throughout threekeyyears.org.

The guiding principals for building strong brains are simple: During the first Three Key Years of life, Talk. Read. Play. Count. Sing with your children. (And now, wash hands.)

TALK: Talking with your baby in those first three key years builds billions of neuron connections. Talking also helps to build vocabulary, and a sense of security for your child.

READ: Find a few books your child really loves and read them over and over. This provides a sense of continuity. Amazon Prime is making some kid’s programming available for free.

PLAY: Stimulate your child’s brain with play. Choose toys that have lights and noise, tactile elements, so that his or her brain can build the billions of connections she or he will need throughout schooling and life.

COUNT: Counting is extremely important, it’s easy to do, and can happen anywhere. The Monterey Bay Aquarium now offers guided activities and an array of live cams to watch animals like sharks and sea otters in their aquarium habitats. How many animals can you count with your children?

SING: Choose simple lullabies that you can repeat and encourage strong emotional bonding.

As we find ourselves at home, we have an opportunity to spend time nourishing our children’s health and strengthening their brains.

This is an invitation for you to join us in spreading the message that every parent can help their child to develop a strong brain for life by exercising their baby’s brains through positive, direct interaction in their first days, weeks, months and Three Key Years of life.

Please share this valuable information with someone you love.

Stay well.