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Fetal/prenatal education series: What are benefits of fetal/prenatal education?

In my opinion, the biggest benefit of fetal/prenatal education is that it offers a head start of parent-child bonding.

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Fetal/prenatal education series: ancient Chinese theories

Ancient Chinese theories believes that fetal/pretal education should start at the time when a human being is formed sometime between conception and birth.

Fetal development was seen at not only physical growth, but a spiritual component—named variously as “soul” or “spirit”—was added or “infused” at a particular time during pregnancy.

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Fetal/prenatal education series: does fetal/prenatal education really work? (Part 1)

Only one decade ago, talking to a baby in the womb or playing music to it still sounded ridiculous or unrealistic. Nowadays the powerful connections between fetal/prenatal education and memory and learning in utero have been revealed in formal experiments, scientific researches, publications, parental observations, and first person reports.

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Fetal/prenatal education series: what is fetal/prenatal education?

Fetal education, sometines called prenatal education, refers to improving an unborn child’s full potential through outside influence on the womb, such as touching/rubbing the surface of belly, reading/talking to the fetus, playing music to the fetus, and etc. Some researchers in the field believe that it is possible to boost a fetus’s intellectual, emotional, and behavioral development via prenatal stimulations or “education”.

I practiced fetal/prenatal education on DD beginning the fourth month of the pregnancy (see Fetal/prenatal education in 4th month). Now she is growing up into an exceptionally healthy, highly intelligent and remarkably beautiful three-year-old.

She has excellent personality: naturally kind-hearted, happy, optimistic, generous, passionate, considerate, and even humorous. She is bit of stubborn, but knows when to yield and compromise; she is bit of aggressive, but understands the rules of sharing and co-play; she is bit of too independent, but calls for help when she needs it (I know, I am bragging about my baby, like any parent in the world).

Overall, DD is the perfect and dream child so far, in my opinion. She lights up my life and brings me enormous joy and enlightenment.
I cannot say all of these DD’s good qualities result in the fetal education. But I do believe that any practice of fetal/prenatal education, such as reading to the fetus or playing music to it, is actually not a waste of time.

I am beginning a new series on the topics of fetal/prenatal education. Today, I want to talk about what is fetal/prenatal education, based on the research I have done and my own understanding and practicing.

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Pre- and perinatal education

I practiced fetal/prenatal education to DD since she was four month in my womb. I will continue the perinatal education after she arrived.

I believe the importance of pre- and perinatal education cannot be underestimated. They give a head start of parent-child bonding, organize the baby’s brain, and possibly shape a baby’s future personality and psychological, mental and behavioral developments.

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Connecting to my baby

Belgian poet and playwright Maurice Maeterlinck once wrote a fairy tale named the Blue Bird. In this work, the author describes how the soul of a baby, waits in the hall of the Blue Palace (Paradise) to be born, and comes down when called by the mother. Although this is a fairy tale, it brings […]

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Continuing fetal/prenatal education

During the 6th and 7th month of pregnancy, I always kept fetal/prenatal education in my mind.

During these two months, important work continues to taking place in the baby’s brain. Beginning the 6th month, her brain continues to grow, eventually it will contain some 100 billion never cells. These nerve cells connect to one another, guided by special substances in the brain, and they will eventually make more connections than there stars in the sky.

In the 7th month, her brain’s sections begin to take on their lifelong roles, such as memory and speech. (from American Baby’s As Your Baby Grows, Volume 16, Number 2, 2007)

Her hearing also continues to develop. By the end of second trimester or the beginning of the third, the ability to hear is quite well developed in the fetus, which means she is able to hear most external sounds or noises.

During this perid, I paid great attention to fetal movements, doing my best to understand the message sent by my baby via her movements. To me, this is so far the only way my baby communicates with me, telling me her needs, likes and dislikes.

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Maternal emotions & fetal movements

According Dr. Thomas R. Verny, one of the world’s leading authorities on the effect of the prenatal and early postnatal environment on personality development, maternal feelings and moods are linked to hormones and neurotransmitters that travel through the bloodstream and across the placenta to the developing brain of the unborn child.

My personal experience does prove the association between maternal emotions and fetal movements. For example, one night I lied on the bed, thinking about the grueling details of tax report (a lot of people probably have the same anxiety before April 15).

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Fetal/prenatal education in 5th month

Today is January 5, 2008, the new year. Six months later, my baby will be born and come to this world. I pray to the God to prevent anything bad happening to me, my husband M and the baby. May the baby come to this world as a healthy, strong, smart and lovely one!

This week is my 17th week, aslo the fifth month of pregnancy. Important work is taking place in baby’s brain. This month, his/her nerve cells will increase rapidly, especially in the front of the brain, where thinking takes place. Fatty sheaths, which act like insulators on electrical wires to speed messages as they travel, have begun to form around the nerve of the spinal cord. (from American Baby’s As Your Baby Grows, Volume 16, Number 2, 2007)

Also during this month, the baby’s senses continue to awaken. The baby has begun to develop his/her ear from inside out. He/she can not only hear the sounds of my heart beating and blood, but also discern my voices.

According to these changes, I changed my fetal education practice a little bit. During this month, I decide to do the following things for him/her:

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Singing to baby

At this early stage of my baby development, I don’t want make our communication too complicated. With this idea in my mind, I created a simple song for my baby:

Baby and mommy, mommy and baby;
Baby is mommy’s baby, mommy is baby’s mommy;
Baby kisses mommy, mommy kisses baby;
Baby loves mommy, mommy loves baby.

It sounds very simple, but I think it is good to my baby at this stage, since my baby is only at the 4th month of gestation and his/her ears just began to form and develop.

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