The first two years of life are a critical period of growth. At this time the diet determines the future course of physical and mental development. Infants who live in developed countries usually weaned between 3 and 4 months, then beginning to be introduced into their diete formula and solid foods. They need a diet rich in protein and calories. Malnutrition in the first two years of life can retard growth permanently, especially the brain and nervous system. Cover this in more depth in chapter eleven.

From sensation to knowledge

The child when born has a limited sensory and perceptual capabilities, which greatly refined during the first 6 months of life. We summarize the development of:

Children are selective in what they observe from the beginning. Some changes take place during the first year in which captures your attention. Newborns observed only the edges of a face. A few months later, fixed eyes and, after a time in a person's mouth while talking.


In the first months of life the child's hearing acuity improved significantly. An important aspect of the hearing in the first year of life is their seemingly innate to distinguish between speech sounds and other sounds kind of capacity.
Sensitivity to sounds babies helps them learn to talk. The ability to recognize familiar voices helps to strengthen links with parents and carers.

The integration of the senses

At the time of delivery the senses of sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell were almost complete and improve rapidly over the next 6 months. However, the integration of the senses (recognizing that a particular sound is coming from a particular object or that object is the touch) is a process that takes on greater efficiency and agility the first year of life and is supported by the coordination vision and achieve the objects (eye-hand coordination). The hand-eye coordination. If a child is shown a very attractive object, it will do several things.

Often open and close the hand waving his arms. Sometimes he opens his mouth as if about to suck. Can even observe carefully the object, but cannot coordinate any of these reflections, it will take a minimum of 5 months to acquire that skill.
To master various hand-eye coordination skills are required; good depth perception, voluntary movement control to catch and arm movements as well as the ability to organize all that in a sequence. The hand-eye coordination once acquired becomes a means to accomplish things and, well, children can learn to stack blocks.