by Dan Rindler, Child’Space Practitioner, GCFP
An interesting article came my way this week about infants and language development. It turns out that when your baby is listening to someone speak, long before they themselves can talk, their motor cortex is active. That is the area of the brain associated with planning and coordinating movement.
When adults learn a new dance step, or to play an instrument or some other complex new coordination, we often think it through before carrying it out. As we imagine ourselves making the movements, the motor cortex is active during the imagining, the same area that will be active when we execute the movement. Its a rehearsal of sorts and one that many professional athletes and performing artists utilize, as well as being a common feature of Feldenkrais classes for adults.
Turns out babies are likely doing something like the same thing for many months before we hear them speak. Rehearsing the movement in their minds to produce the sounds they hear (and the lip and tongue movements they see) their parents make when they speak. You can read the rest of the article here.