The Core Story of Child Development

Maine’s unique quality of life is important to all Mainers and we want to preserve it for our future and for our children. We want to make sure they have the opportunity to live, work and raise their families in Maine. Yet, given life’s stressors such as unemployment and low wages, physical and mental health problems or the uncertainty of our economy, the future of our state and our children could be in jeopardy.

The question before all Mainers is what can we do TODAY to guarantee the future prosperity of our state’s economy and its quality of life? The answer lies in every community throughout the state—everywhere there are young children. Maine’s future prosperity – economic and otherwise – rests squarely on their well-being and success.

From progress in neuroscience, we know that early experiences shape the architecture of the developing brain and lay the foundation for lifelong learning, behavior and health. The Maine Children’s Growth Council has adopted the “Core Story of Child Development” illustrations to represent our work. The six banners (web pages) presented here characterize elements of the core story: Maine Prosperity, Brain Architecture, Interactions, Toxic Stress, Getting it Right Early and Solutions. Thanks to Council members, six foot banner versions have travelled to events all over Maine to inform parents, business leaders, philanthropy, the public and policymakers about the importance of early childhood.

Two important organizations, The Center for the Developing Child at Harvard and the FrameWorks Institute helped the Council extensively to organize its message for Maine. The Center and its partners, the National Scientific Council on the Developing Child, and The National Forum on Early Childhood Policy and Programs are primary sources for the Council’s communications and public education campaign. We use these sources liberally throughout our work and this website, with and without citations and quotations. We were fortunate to participate in the FrameWorks Institute messaging at the same time as the Harvard Center, thus our materials are interchangeable.  We encourage review and readership of the Center, Council, and Forum materials at their websites.

Follow the work of the Maine Children’s Growth Council to find out how you can help lay the foundation for your child and for Maine’s future. Contact us today for more information.