What Your Baby Knows at Birth: Total Awareness

Category: Newborns

Don’t underestimate your baby’s ability to perceive his environment.

WORDS CHRISTEL GERALYN GOMES

 

Baby is Aware of Everything

Gopnik also suggests that the baby brain perceives reality in a diffused or less focused way – he is vaguely aware of everything happening around him but is less focused on any one particular thing.

 

The analogy coined for this concept is “lantern versus flashlight awareness”. In other words, adult attention tends to be like a flashlight – wherever our focus falls, other things in the background fade out of our attention. This is opposed to the way a baby’s attention falls – the same way a lantern lights a room, casting everything in dim but diffused light.

 

 

This type of brain activity is due to the fact that babies have many, many more

neuronal connections in their brains than adults.

 

 

Over time, as the brain matures, neuronal paths that are used more often strengthen, while those that are less used are slowly lost. Gopnik argues that creative people have sometimes retained the ability to think like an infant.  

 

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