From the Editor; The Early Years; Special Editions; by Mariette DiChristina; 1 Page(s)
I knew I was being watched. Dark eyes tracked my movements, intent. Impulsively, I grinned widely. I picked up a stuffed elephant from the menagerie on the coverlet and hugged and kissed it. Her eyes widened slightly as my baby daughter registered the idea. Today she is six years old, and "Ellie" is still her favorite plush companion when she needs a cuddle and mommy is not immediately available.
As the articles in this special issue underscore, a child's rapid cognitive development begins from the earliest ages and may continue into young adulthood. Before they can talk, tots are learning how the world works and how they can apply that knowledge. "Test Subjects in Diapers," by Gisa Aschersleben, reveals how quickly infants learn to think critically--and the ways in which scientists can "ask" babbling babies to show what they know.