Log in


Goldberg: Real Intelligence (R.I.) starts early


With Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) taking center stage these days, it is important not to forget about Real Intelligence (R.I.).

Remember the saying, “You are what you eat?” Now it is time to add, “You are what you experience.” While these keep being important all through life, they are most impactful in our first three years. The brain doubles in size in the first two and is 90% formed by age five. We are all a product of our experiences, and that is why we want them to keep being as good as possible.

Parents and grandparents, you are the major source of providing early experiences. Having said that, here are a few key ideas that can guide you during this most important formative time — hands-on interaction, high quality and quantity language, and competence that creates confidence (self-esteem). Please notice that no screen or tech equipment can provide these.

Hands-on interactive means engaging with people. High quality and quantity language refers to long, meaningful and caring talk. You can boost self-esteem by pointing out to your child his or her skills, abilities and positive characteristics as often as possible.

These three concepts are game changers, ways of life and strategies to use with children throughout their lives. However, here is the hidden gem. Start early. How soon? On day one. As you welcome your little one with joy in the first three months, pack that time as much as you can with personal attention, lots of loving language and by expressing your delight at each coo, gurgle, smile and more. Every moment counts. With Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) out there today, having people with Real Intelligence (R.I.) to keep an eye on it all is more important than ever.

Reader reactions, pro or con, are welcomed at AzOpinions@iniusa.org.