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Growing and learning with babies

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The first and most important learning in a child’s life happens within the family. Children learn from the way people treat them and what they see, hear and experience from as soon as they are born. Between birth and five years, and especially to three years, children grow and learn at the fastest rate of their life.

Parents and those who care for babies have a great opportunity in these early years to help shape babies' learning, long before they start school. Babies are natural learners from birth. They learn by watching, listening and especially by doing.

All babies go through similar stages of learning and development. But there are differences between babies at each stage, and differences in the length of time it takes babies to move from stage to stage.

To find out more 

Parenting SA has developed a Parent Easy Guide called Growing and learning in the family which has lots of ideas about this, and how families can support their children's learning. Parenting SA is a partnership between the Department for Education and Child Development and the Women’s and Children’s Health Network in South Australia.

The Raising Children Network website has a lot of very good information about child development, communicating and play too.

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The information on this site should not be used as an alternative to professional care. If you have a particular problem, see a doctor, or ring the Parent Helpline on 1300 364 100 (local call cost from anywhere in South Australia).

This topic may use 'he' and 'she' in turn - please change to suit your child's sex.

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