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December 21, 2018

The Week in Early Learning

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This week’s best reads about early learning from around the web – December 22, 2018 edition.

Are shampoos tied to early puberty rates? How much does it cost to raise a child in 2018? Did you know scientists are giving caffeine to premature babies? It’s hard to stay in the loop of what’s going on in the world of early learning. But we’ve got you covered!

Each week we will comb through the web and find the most interesting early childhood reads.

The Loveliest Children’s Books of 2018 – via Brain Pickings

Art by Lara Hawthorne for a letter by Jacqueline Woodson from A Velocity of Being: Letters to a Young Reader. via Brain Pickings

Brain Picking’s Maria Popova reads the timeless classic, The Little Prince every year. This is why her “best books” list is not limited to books that were published in 2018 — her list consists of timeless reads for children. And this year’s does not disappoint. It has a sweet Maurice Sendak story, James Baldwin’s only children’s book, a celebration of history’s heroic women illustrated by Maira Kalman, a stunning serenade to the wilderness, and more.

Why it’s crucial that children should learn philosophy – via The Irish Times

Introducing philosophy to children at a young age provides a great opportunity to cultivate their sense of wonder, argues this piece by Brendan O’Donoghue from the Irish Times. For children, learning about philosophy can help them develop their ability to ask big questions and think independently. The article also has great suggestions for books to read and concepts to ponder with your little one.

Premature babies’ brains benefit from caffeine in first few days of life – via The Bump

While caffeine can be very harmful for infants, a new research study shows that infants born early can benefit greatly from caffeine. The new study published in the journal Pediatrics looks at data collected from thousands of toddlers from Canada who had been treated with caffeine as babies. The children were assessed for their language, cognitive and motor development skills.

How Much Does It Cost to Raise a Child in the U.S. in 2018? – via The Street

America is facing a decline in childbirths. Some people believe the decline has something to do with how expensive it is to raise a child. For families all across America, the number one expense in raising a child is housing at 29%. Food was second at 18%. Transportation was 15%, health care 9%, clothing 6% and miscellaneous other expenses was 7%.

2018 TIMPANI Toy Study – via The Center for Early Childhood Education

Play is the fundamental way children prepare for the future. And nearly all meaningful play includes toys. TIMPANI stands for Toys that Inspire Mindful Play and Nurture Imagination, and is an internationally acclaimed study conducted by the Center for Early Childhood Education at Eastern Connecticut State University. See what toy they picked as the best one for the year 2018! A single toy can transform a child’s play from simple to symbolic, from repetitive to inventive, from solitary to social.

Could soaps, shampoos be pushing girls into early puberty? – via Chicago Tribune

To explore the issue, investigators from the Center for Environmental Research and Children’s Health at the University of California, Berkeley studied pregnant women and their children for a long time. The scientists analyzed data collected from pregnant women between 1999 and 2000. What they found, is that exposure to chemicals found in common personal care products was linked to early puberty among girls.

Want to learn more about choosing products that are safe for your family? Visit the Environmental Working Group website.

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