The Texas Infant, Toddler, and Three-Year-Old Early Learning Guidelines

The research is clear. The first three years of life are the most important years. During this period, brain development occurs at a very rapid rate in response to each child’s early experiences. The quality of these early learning experiences is shaped by two factors: the caregiver with whom the child spends his or her time and the child’s environment. A caregiver can be an early childhood professional, parent, grandparent or anyone who has the responsibility of caring for a child’s needs. Caregivers must do everything in their power to ensure that this critical phase of human development is full of healthy, rich, and stimulating experiences because strong and powerful brains are created during these years. The brains of these young children are highly active. In fact, by age three, human brains have accomplished 80 percent of their growth!