Written by: Dawn Herman

Have you ever walked into a room that you’ve been in 100 times only this time to be stopped in your tracks because something is different but you can’t figure out why? It’s because our brains are wired to snap to attention when presented with something new. “Novelty,” as it’s called, releases adrenaline in the brain and it helps create memories. Researchers believe new experiences and environments promote brain growth. Your young child’s brain is no exception.

Here are a few simple ways to create novelty in your child’s life:

  • Change the seating at family mealtime
  • Rotate favorite toys or books
  • Rearrange furniture or pictures on the wall
  • Drive a new direction in/out of your neighborhood or to a familiar location
  • Read favorite books with a new accent
  • Try art time in a dry bathtub
  • Have lunch in your backyard or in the living room


Ideas for adding novelty to your child’s day can be silly and lots of fun. You don’t need to stress yourself out by changing TOO many things, but change it up every now and then (every 2-4 weeks) should be enough to promote new brain connections. Remember: too much change at once can stress a child out, too. Give it a try and notice how your child reacts to the changes. Don’t forget to have fun with it and see how many more changes you can come up with. Who knew having such fun could help strengthen your child’s rapidly developing brain?

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