Can early experiences impact whether genes are turned on or off?

In the recent years, scientific research has taught us that early life experiences can have a powerful influence on the developing brain. The brain is particularly responsive and malleable to both experiences and the environment we live in during the early years; this in turn affects how well our brain architecture develops and functions. Every experience, whether it is seeing a puppy for the first time, going to the park, or being in a car accident – impacts the neural connections of the brain. In other words, every experience can cause the brain to develop in different ways. Interestingly, scientists have discovered that early experiences don’t only impact brain architecture, they can actually determine how genes are turned on and off and even whether some are expressed at all!

This means that positive and nurturing early experiences can help the brain to develop well and negative experiences of neglect and abuse can cause some genetically-normal children to generate certain abnormalities. The lack of information about the critical role a child’s first experiences play in shaping his or her brain, led to a lack of focus on this particular stage of development. Most people used to think that a child wouldn’t remember those first experiences, but now we know they can actually impact a child physiologically, on a genetic level. Continue reading

Take a special tour around Kinedu 2.0!

Our team created this cool video that gives a quick tour around Kinedu 2.0. This was intended as a preview to our users but now, we share it with you on our blog so that you get to know a little bit more about Kinedu 2.0 in a fun and different way. In the video, you can appreciate the incredible new design that the latest version of the app contains.

Download the latest version of Kinedu from the Itunes App Store or simply click here to do so.

Teach self-control through books!

Reading to your child for a few minutes everyday is extremely beneficial for his or her brain development, language skills and social skills! Even the American Academy of Pediatrics has urged pediatricians to constantly remind their patients about this!Books can become useful tools that help your child identify and make sense of feelings, and they help parents teach children how to deal with difficult emotions and situations. Many times books simply offer an easy and productive way to teach children about things like friendship, diversity, and self-control – a fundamental ability.

It is well known that self-control is very important for a child to thrive academically, socially, and emotionally. Self-control is the ability to stop and think before acting – maintaining composure in challenging situations. Therefore, to have self-control you must be aware of your own thoughts and emotions. For parents, teaching self-control becomes a priority, and it is an ability that requires practice to be learned. However, you should keep in mind that babies’ and toddlers’ prefrontal cortex (the part of the brain associated with self-regulation and control) is not fully developed; therefore, it is not reasonable to expect a kid to have self-control like an adult does. If your child is very young, he or she will have trouble effectively controlling emotions, thoughts, and actions – and that’s completely normal! The limits you establish should be according to his or her developmental stage.

Books can be a great way to talk to your little one about self-control! Your child will learn through the different characters and situations in the stories, and talking about it afterwards can help him or her compare and relate them to real life. Have you been introduced to Leslie Patricelli’s books? They are a must – very fun, light, and great for learning about self-control! Look out for these: Continue reading

Kinedu 2.0: Completely redesigned!

Have you downloaded Kinedu’s latest version, Kinedu 2.0? If you haven’t, it’s a must! The new version of our app features a completely new design you are sure to love!

We redesigned Kinedu 2.0 using Apple’s new Swift language for a faster and better experience. The new app has performance improvements and a more intuitive interface so that our users can easily navigate the app and track their baby’s development. For example, the clearer progress report graphics makes it easier for you to visualize your child’s development and the new milestone checklist allows you to update your baby’s milestones and know which big ones are coming up soon! Also, aligned with the milestones checklist, the way to answer the periodical assessments has completely changed – becoming clearer as well!

See for yourself by taking a short video tour of the most important new features by clicking here!

Foto Kinedu 2.0 Progress Foto Kinedu 2.0 actividad Foto Kinedu 2.0

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Amazing, right? Kinedu 2.0 is brighter, bolder and simpler – making it easier for our users to navigate and get the most out of the whole experience! Don’t miss out on it! Download Kinedu 2.0 by clicking here.

Kinedu 2.0: The new Milestones checklist

Because you asked for it – now, with Kinedu 2.0 you can easily update your baby’s milestones at any time! We’ve made it simpler to keep track of your child’s huge accomplishments (as well as each little one!).

Presenting Milestones, a new section of our app. You might be wondering how it works; it’s quite simple! This section presents a list of developmentally appropriate milestones according to your child’s age. That way, you know what milestones you should expect in the upcoming months! You can update the list at any time and record what milestones your child has reached. Simply check them off – the checkmarks that are filled out represent accomplished milestones! You can select different developmental areas to assess: physical, social and emotional, linguistic, and cognitive. When you are done reviewing the milestones, click on the Submit button below.

You might notice that some milestones are presented as a bullet below other milestones. Those represent milestones that are related to one another, and accomplishing the first in some cases automatically means the bullets below have been reached as well, in most cases they will help you look out for more specific behaviors related to a milestone.

We know that it’s exciting when your baby reaches a new milestone, and now you can keep track of each one!

Download Kinedu 2.0 today! Click here.

Kinedu 2.0: The new and improved progress report!

The latest version of our app has a lot of exciting new features and improvements. One of the things we noticed that was very important for our users, was the progress section of our app. Most importantly, understanding how their babies were doing compared to the average child. That is why we worked hard to bring you a new way to view your child’s progress – with a clearer interface that is easier to understand!

This is how the progress report works:

It is divided by key areas of development, Physical, Linguistic, Cognitive and Social and Emotional, the same way the activities are. The first chart you see represents the percentage of milestones achieved in the initial assessment; the second chart, called ‘live progress’, represents current percentage of achieved milestones; the third one represents the percentage of milestones achieved by the average same-age baby. Browse through each area and find out where are your baby’s strengths and areas of opportunity!

foto close up progress

 

Have you downloaded the newest version of our app? Why wait, right? Get it here!

It’s finally here: We are proud to present Kinedu 2.0!

The day is finally here. We are extremely exited to share with you the new and improved version of our app. The wait is over!

Kinedu 2.0 features a completely redesigned app using Apple’s new Swift language creating a better experience. It’s never been easier to navigate the app and track your baby’s development! With that comes clearer progress report graphics that also make it easier for you to visualize your child’s evolvement. On top of that, with Kinedu 2.0 you are now able to access the Milestone Checklist, a list of developmental milestones that correspond to your child and you can update at any time.

Two other special features presented in Kinedu 2.0 are the Tracks Program and the Seasonal Activities. Our new Tracks Program is designed to support you child’s development by working on a specific skill like crawling, walking, and saying his first words. The Seasonal Activities bring 149 new activities that include Halloween, Thanksgiving, and Christmas themes.

What are you waiting for? Download the latest version of our app from the app store today! Click here!

Foto Kinedu 2.0 Progress

Foto Kinedu 2.0 actividad

Foto Kinedu 2.0

What is the key to raising a happy child?

When people are asked what is their ultimate goal in life, they often reply: “to be happy”. So it’s a no-brainer why parents often say that their main goal is to raise a happy child. But what exactly does it mean to be happy? Is it an emotion, a positive subjective state, or a state of being? The answer is not as easy as it seems. Many parents – and scientists alike have tried to get the answer right. One scientist who has spent years studying the notion of happiness is Daniel Gilbert, from Harvard University, and he proposes three definitions to happiness: emotional, moral, and judgmental.

  • Emotional happiness is a feeling related to an experience. For example when your child is excited by a movie, by a trip to an amusement park, or even delighted by a cookie.
  • Moral happiness is more related with virtue and philosophical views. It is thinking that when your child lives a good and proper life full of moral meaning – then he or she will feel deeply satisfied and content. Dan Gilbert uses the Greek word eudaimonia to exemplify it, and it translates to ‘good spirit … human flourishing … [and] life well lived.’
  • Judgmental happiness is making a judgment about the source of potentially pleasurable feelings – in the past, present, or future. This type of happiness is usually followed by words such as “about”, “for”, and “that”. For example, your child might be excited about getting a dog or might be happy for going to the park.

Knowing this information clarifies what happiness means, but the question remains: what makes people happy? And Is there a formula we can follow?

Continue reading

Health Corner: Baby Reflux Symptoms and Tips

Does your baby vomit, is irritable, and cries often after eating? If he does, he is probably suffering from gastro-esophageal reflux (GOR/reflux).  Whether a baby is breastfed or formula-fed, it doesn’t matter – they can both suffer from reflux. This ailment occurs when food and stomach acid flows back into the esophagus, and sometimes out of the mouth. Babies usually suffer from reflux because the ring of muscle at the bottom of the esophagus (which opens and closes to allow food to enter the stomach) hasn’t fully developed yet. This means that when your baby’s tummy is full, milk and acid can come back up the food pipe, causing discomfort. Although this problem is messy and may be frustrating, you shouldn’t be alarmed – it is actually one of the most common baby feeding problems! In fact, around 25% of all babies experience some degree of it. The good news is that GOR usually resolves on its own without any treatment by 12 to 18 months of age. Only about 5% of infants over the age of 12 months will continue to regurgitate.

 

But how can you know if your baby suffers from reflux? Here are some of the signs you should lookout for:

  • Regurgitates milk/food
  • Irritability
  • Feeds poorly
  • Coughs frequently
  • Vomits frequently
  • Cries after being fed
  • Experiences discomfort, gas or abdominal pain after feeding (heartburn)

 

If your baby experiences mild reflux but is feeding well, the following tips may help:

Continue reading

Kinedu 101

Welcome! In this guide you’ll find everything you need to know about Kinedu!

Activity Plan:

Your activity plan is your program of daily activities. To create the activity plan, we take into account the assessment you answered at the beginning – reason for which is very important you answer it carefully. By analyzing which developmental milestones your baby has not reached yet, it suggests activities that will help him/her reinforce the skills needed. The activity plan is generated for 5 days and at the end of this period it will tally the missing milestones and will create a new activity plan based on the milestones that have not been reached. In the activity plan screen you will find 5 activities assigned for each day.

During those 5 days you will have the opportunity to see various types of activities – ones that may seem easy for your baby and others that you may find more complex. You should not expect your child to be able to complete all the activities; they are designed to be done with time. The important thing is to practice constantly and strengthen his/her skills!

 

Recording Progress:

When you finish an activity with your baby it is very important that you continue to update your baby’s progress. A small assessment will be displayed, for which you will have to answer if your baby was able to reach certain milestones. The way to answer this mini assessment is the same way as before! We strongly emphasize the recording progress process because with those brief questions, the next activity plan will be updated to fit you baby’s needs and so will the Reports section of our app.

 

Viewing Reports:

In the Reports section you will be able to see your baby’s improvement compared to the initial assessment and compared to that of children his/her same age. In order for the reports to be accurate, we stress on the importance of constantly updating your baby’s milestones. Many parents wondered what they could expect from their child’s development within their age group. With the complete reports section, you will be able to have a preview of what your baby will accomplish in the following months! You’ll also see clear graphics depicting the number of milestones and activities that you completed each week, your baby’s upcoming milestones, and a specific Track suggestion.

 

Daily Reminders:

If you want the app to establish daily reminders for you to do the activities with your baby, you simply select the left menu then go to the bottom and select ‘settings’, and afterwards simply establish the timing of your preference.

 

Becoming a Premium user: 

Premium users have the following benefits:

  • Full access to all activities on the activity plan
  • Activity Catalog
  • Option to add caregivers (such as spouse, grandparents, uncles, etc.) into a single account
  • Option to add up to 5 babies
  • Complete progress reports

You can access these new features and the next to come, as well as your full activity plan if you are Premium user. You can also individually buy each activity and new features.

Kinedu Community:

We also welcome you to become the newest member of our Kinedu community! Where we upload daily content on child development – such as articles, tips, talks, and awesome book recommendations.

http://www.facebook.com/kineducom

http://www.blog.kinedu.com

 

This is all for now! Questions or comments? Please feel free to contact us at hello@kinedu.com or simply leave a message right here! We’ll be happy to help!