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Anuraj Shankar from our EOCRU unit in Jakarta, Indonesia, with Elizabeth Prado and Leila Larson describe a meta-analysis showing that responsive caregiving boosts infants’ brain development. Parenting group sessions and home visits improve cognitive, language, and motor skills. And nutrition-only programmes have much less effect than comprehensive interventions.

Two mothers holding an infant and a toddler, all smiling © Elizabeth Prado

Ani’s mother tells her a story each night before she goes to sleep. Her older sister sings songs and plays clapping games with her. She and her older brother play with a ball together, throwing and kicking it back and forth. Ani’s father makes her a toy car out of wire and they play together. These simple activities change the shape of Ani’s brain.

The full story is available on the Early Childhood Matters website

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