Will Baby Crawl - Anthropological Study

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Will Baby Crawl - Anthropological Study

Will Baby Crawl - Anthropological Study
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Hi, Not new research but a link I came across recently from the National Science Foundation entitled 'Will Baby Crawl'.

Anthropologist David Tracer studied children in Papua New Guinea. His view was that milestones of child development vary with culture.

http://www.nsf.gov/discoveries/disc_summ.jsp?cntn_id=103153&org=NSF

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Wed, Apr 11 2007 2:45 PM In reply to
marcy2marcy

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not only that but here in UK, it seems that now they are saying that crawling is not a milestone.some babies do not crawl and go straight to walking. reasons range from slleping on back due to SIDs, no tummy time. these elements are based on environment and socitey's direction as to how children should be raised. I find this concept very scary indeed.any comments!
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Fri, Apr 13 2007 5:03 AM In reply to
francoisef

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Hi Helen,

Thanks for this interesting link. There is an ongoing controversy in comparative anthropology about early motor development. Babies who are carried for a long time then go through a very rapid uptake of motor skills (also language skills) when they are made to trot along their older siblings and cousins, at some stage in their third year. It's also often the time when they are weaned, so a tough transition for toddlers altogether. There is still little research about the stimulation that babies receive while being carried. I personally think that babies are very active in hanging on from an early time (particularly when carried by playful tomboy ten year old girls) and we try to integrate this sort of stimulation in the relaxed holds. Crawling is a vexed issue as some neuroscientists claim that it's essential for a healthy wiring of the brain and therapists achieve good results in improving coordination skills through diagonal movements. Amazonian babies born in houses on stilts with wide wooden platforms generally crawl, but Upper Amazon babies born in houses with mud floors are carried most of the time and not allowed to crawl on the ground or floor for reasons mentioned in the New Guinea study. The beauty of New Guinea is that it has been a focus for early development studies for the last thirty years, with many different research outcomes according to both the interests of researchers and the diversity of cultures. It would be fun to do a cross-cultural review just for New Guinea and my guess is that it would show that there are many routes to viable development for us versatile humans. Spot the guys who want to prove a point using anthropological data!

The last century has seen a wide-ranging change in early stimulation irrespective of parenting styles (strict routines or demand feeding). Recently I was in Peru and picked a newspaper announcement about a national fetal stimulation day run by the Peruvian National Association for Fetal Stimulation. Such an association does not yet exist in the UK as far as I know... But away from Lima, the old style prevailed and babies followed their mothers' lives on their backs in the crowded markets or wherever, perhaps laid to rest in mini hammocks for a while.

Anyone interested in doing a search on the scientific publications on infant crawl? we are getting in gear for the Birthlight newsletter, so need a lot of lead time for interesting topics like this one...please send your views and testimonies about crawling of your babies or babies in your classes, thanks

and thanks again Helen for the stimulation

FrancoiseF