Simple Ideas with Profound Impact
Parenting With the Brain in Mind
Welcome to the BrainFit Kids blog. We’re so happy that you found us. If you’re a new parent, congratulations on landing the most important job in the world!
Our goal at BrainFit Kids is to help you raise children who are smart, capable, and compassionate. Children who have self-confidence, are not afraid to try new things, are happy in their own skin and therefore can better handle social pressures and are kind to others. Children who are curious and have a love of learning.
We want BrainFit Kids to be the resource you turn to as you navigate this wild ride of parenthood.
Who are we and why should you care?
We are a team of two sets of parents that combines extensive expertise in child brain development and “in the trenches” practical experience. For over forty years we, Charles & Conceição Solis, have guided parents all over the world. We founded the Reach Family Institute and our teaching has spanned from the worst slums of South America to cosmopolitan cities like Rio de Janeiro and Paris, including consultations for a former President of Venezuela and members of Pope John Paul II’s Swiss Guard in Vatican City. In addition to teaching parents, we have also trained more than 200 professionals including doctors specializing in Pediatrics, Physical Therapists, Occupational Therapists, Speech Therapists, Psychologists, and Special Education Teachers.
Juliana and Jack Gaither are the parents of two little ones, ages 4 and 1. Juliana is our daughter and she grew up right alongside our work. She traveled with us around the world as we worked with children and really got to see firsthand all that we teach. She always loved and admired our work but it wasn’t until having children of her own that she fully understood and appreciated what we were teaching. Seeing it in practice with her own kids makes all the difference! Juliana and Jack were friends when they studied together at the University of Notre Dame and it wasn’t until about 4 years later (when both were working on graduate degrees there and Juliana was also working for the University) that they began dating and eventually got married. Jack’s background lies more in the business and tech worlds but he is an extremely involved father and has really become passionate about all that we teach. You can read more about each of us here.
The more we talked about child development and the brain and how it all fits into the way one chooses to parent, the more we felt a need to share the information with all parents. As Jack and Juliana experienced parenthood firsthand and all the challenges that come along with it, they also better understood how many current parenting norms can actually hinder parenting in a style that is truly best for a developing baby. And so BrainFit Kids was born!
Parenting is not an easy job.
From the very first moment we look into our baby’s eyes we feel a love never felt before and at the same time a completely new sense of responsibility that can, quite frankly, be overwhelming at times. Why didn’t this small, wonderful, creature come with a manual?!
As new parents, there are endless questions and those questions only seem to grow as our children do. When should my baby be smiling? When should I put my baby in their own room? By when should she know who I am? When will he be saying his first words? We expect our pediatricians to let us know of anything special we should be doing or if there is anything going awry. Though in truth it’s hard for them to take the time during a visit to go through all the elements of your child’s development. We ask our mothers, our friends, Google. Everyone has an opinion. So many opinions!
The village is helpful. It’s crucial, in fact. But the truth is that most people have little knowledge about the important stages of development and, perhaps more importantly, what actually makes child development happen. What’s really going on in that incredible growing brain? Generally, this is because there isn’t all that much information out there that explains how each stage fits together, how they build on each other and why they are important in a holistic sense. There is certainly little out there for parents that relates these stages of development to what is actually happening in your child’s brain.
Babies have biological and physiological needs and how we meet those needs has consequences. In today’s culture, many societal norms actually hinder meeting those needs. What makes a baby go from step A to step B in any area of development? Is it time? Around the time she turns 1 she will learn to walk. By the time she is around 2 she will be speaking at least a few short sentences. Is it chance? Some children are physical and some are intellectual… girls always speak earlier than boys no matter what… etc. In any case, eventually we all grow up and we do okay. Some of us are lucky to learn easily and some of us have to work hard… Is it the luck of the draw?
We are here to tell you that nothing in a child’s development should or needs to happen by accident. Everything you do has a direct effect on how your baby’s brain will function and develop and this is especially true in the first 3 years of life. How empowering! 85% of the human brain develops in the first three years of life. How well they learn, how well they move, how well they speak and so on is a result of how their brain is developing and will have an impact on their future.
The way you raise your children in the first few years of their lives will have, for better or for worse, the biggest and most lasting impact on your child’s life. Phew! It may seem like we just heaped a bunch of added pressure onto the already stressful world of parenting. But we don’t mean for all of this to scare you. We mean for it to motivate you! The changes and growth in the first few years of a person’s life are incredible. Raising a BrainFit Kid means having an understanding of the stages of proper brain development and, with that information in mind, being intentional about how you parent. It means having an understanding of what makes babies go from point A to point B in development. It means Parenting with the Brain in Mind. The potential of those little humans you love so very much is boundless. The profound impact that you can have on them is immeasurable. The power really comes in the knowledge and understanding of how your child’s brain develops so that you can do simple things to help your child thrive.
At BrainFit Kids, we believe that every child is unique and therefore has their own strengths and personalities and every child deserves the opportunity to reach their potential. We strive to maximize every child’s potential; intellectually, physically, socially and emotionally. With that end in mind, we are here to empower you with knowledge and tools related to Parenting with the Brain in Mind. If you want to be part of a group of parents who approach their children’s future intentionally, join the conversation by following us on Social Media (Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, Twitter, YouTube) and don’t forget to subscribe to our email list to get the latest updates.
Let’s build a world full of smart, capable, and compassionate young people!