A stimulating environment is important for young children, and much of a child’s brain develops during the earliest part of life. The visual system, in particular, develops rapidly over the first few weeks. As early as nine minutes after birth, babies prefer to look at photographs and pictures that most resemble the human face. Newborns can see color, and a one-month-old can discriminate red from green. At 12 weeks old, infants demonstrate preferences for colored stimuli as opposed to white.
In addition to looking at themselves, infants are attracted to high contrast visuals, bold images, colorful objects, and faces. The same holds true for toddlers, who also are drawn to looking at animals, shiny objects, and familiar items that are part of their world.
It’s no surprise, then, that an art museum is a rich source of visual stimulation for babies. Introducing infants to works of art promotes early neuron connections in the brain. And for the verbal toddler, interacting with an adult in naming images and describing different characteristics in a work of art lays the groundwork for visual, cognitive, and language development.
FREE Baby Tours
Watch your child respond to large colorful paintings and learn ways to facilitate early visual literacy skills. Join us for a lively and FREE 30-minute Baby Tour. Parents and caregivers with infants up to 18 months are welcome. Check the Family Center calendar for upcoming tours.
Tours and Museum admission free. Parking is free for members, $7 nonmembers