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Kids at Work ... Brains at Play

WESTWOOD EARLY CHILDHOOD COUNCIL
Celebrates Brain Building in Progress Week With

 “KIDS AT PLAY…BRAINS AT WORK”

Westwood Coordinated Family & Community Engagement Program

provides resources to families in Westwood
to support families and promote early learning

 

WESTWOOD - The town of Westwood is joining communities across the state in hosting special events
to recognize the importance of early child development. Governor Patrick has declared April 5-12, 2014
“Brain Building in Progress Week” in Massachusetts, in further support of the statewide campaign led by
the Department of Early Education and Care and United Way to bring together local partners around the importance of enriching and engaging environments that offer learning opportunities for young children.
Brain Building in Progress Week also occurs during the national Week of the Young Child.

 

Westwood Early Childhood Council and community partners will host “Kids at Play…Brains at Work” on Sunday April 6th from 3:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m. at the Westwood Main Library, bringing families together to offer information on how to foster healthy child development, fun activities, as well as opportunities to learn more about programs in the area that support young children and their families. This is a free event. For more information or to register go to http://www.westwood.k12.ma.us/index.cfm?pid=14678 or contact Janet Lucey at (781) 461-9548 jlucey@westwood.k12.ma.us.

 

 The Brain Building in Progress Campaign aims to bring communities together around early education
with the knowledge that the investments we make supporting children and their families from the start pays dividends for the future of our entire community.

 

Research shows the importance on investing in early education from birth:[1]

·       In a child’s first few years of life, they are making 700 new neural connections per second

·       Disparities in a child’s vocabulary can begin to appear at 18 months

·       There is a 90% chance of developmental delays when children experience certain risk factors

·       $4-$9 in returns for every dollar invested in early childhood programs

 

Janet Lucey, Westwood Early Childhood Coordinator, recognizes parents as their child’s first teacher. The Brain Building In Progress campaign emphasizes that whenever you see children interacting and learning in enriching environments, what you’re really seeing is brain building in progress. All families with young children are invited to participate. Parents will receive take home learning activities and be encouraged to make any moment a brain building moment.

 

A recently launched calendar and map on brainbuildinginprogress.org provides a comprehensive list of Brain Building in Progress Week events, as well as a comprehensive list of “Brain Building Zones” and events that are easily searched by community throughout the year.  Over 100 Coordinated Family and Community Engagement programs, museums, and libraries throughout the state have posted almost 2,000 events throughout the spring. Activities include ongoing events like parent workshops and playgroups as well as onetime events such as Family Fun Nights and Infant Dental Care.

 

            “United Way is about bringing people together to solve problems, and there is no greater example of that than working with EEC and our network of top performing early education providers to help build young minds,” said Michael K. Durkin, President of United Way of Massachusetts Bay and Merrimack Valley. "Research shows us that early experiences literally shape how the brain gets built. A strong foundation in the early years increases the probability of positive outcomes."

 

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About United Way of Massachusetts Bay & Merrimack Valley

One of the region's largest nonprofits, United Way's work ensures that children enter school ready to learn, youth stay engaged in school so they graduate with options for the future, and parents attain financial stability. No other single organization has the scope, expertise, and influence to bring together hundreds of human services agencies, government, businesses, private foundations and dedicated volunteers around a common vision of creating maximum impact and achieving long-lasting results.

 


[1] Data from the Center on the Developing Child at Harvard University www.developingchild.harvard.edu/resources

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