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Healthy Attachments and Childhood Development Tools

Healthy interactive tools/gameplay ideas for helping your child develop healthy attachments. Resources from Harvard's Center on the Developing Child.

Play is an important part of a child’s life. For babies and toddlers, simple, playful interactions with care takers help develop sturdy brain architecture, the foundations of lifelong health, and the building blocks of resilience. (Resilience is the ability to use the internal and external resources you've accumulated/learned to persevere through hardships). Children can practice and strengthen important executive function skills that will help them throughout their lives through games and playful activities, including learning to focus their attention, strengthening their working memory, and developing basic self-control.

We want to provide you with a few tools to help nurture the building blocks needed for healthy attachment, academia, physical health / wellbeing, social skills, interconnection, and resiliency. The following handout series from developingchild.harvard.edu, developed with support from the LEGO Foundation, provides suggestions for games and play-based activities based on a child’s age. The activities for younger children are designed for adults to engage in with children. Activities for later ages allow the adults to step back, enabling children’s independence to blossom as they transition to playing more often with peers.

Games to Play with Babies (6 Months)

Games to Play with Babies (9 Months)

Games to Play with Toddlers (12 Months)

Games to Play with Toddlers (18 Months)

Games to Play with Toddlers (2-3 Years)

Additional Interaction Ideas from Vroom: Early Learning

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