by Valerie Verkamp
Landmark assistant editor
Ninety percent of a child's brain develops in the first five years of life.
Research shows early brain stimulation based on daily experiences, parent and caregiver responsiveness, nutrition, and physical activity greatly influence early brain development.
Studies also indicate children who were engaged in a high quality early childhood program are more likely to graduate high school, pursue an extended education, and earn higher wages. That directly correlates with a lower crime rate, lower unemployment rate, and fewer teen pregnancies.
Erin Brower, executive director for Raise Your Hands for Kids, said that is why investing in early childhood programs is key to creating a better Missouri. “If a kids not getting a right start from the very beginning, they will face a lot of challenges down the road.” For more on story.