The brains of babies and adults are sync up during the game play, A research team conducted the first study to investigate how the brains of infants and adults interact during natural play, and they found measurable similarities in their neuronal activity.
In other words, brain activity in infants and adults increases and decreases when toys and eye contact are shared. Previous studies have shown that adult brains synchronize when they watch movies and hear stories. However, little is known about how the sync of these neurons develops in the first years of life.
It is very difficult to study real life and personal communication between babies and adults. Most of the previous nerve coupling studies, many of which were carried out in the laboratory, involved scanning the brains of adults with functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI) in separate sessions while adults lay and watch movies or listen to stories.
To study communication in real time, researchers must develop child-friendly methods to simultaneously record brain activity in the brains of infants and adults.
Researchers have developed a new neurovisual dual brain system that uses functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS), which is very safe and records blood oxygenation as a proxy for neuronal activity. The environment allows researchers to record nerve coordination between infants and adults when playing with toys, singing songs, and reading books.
The same adults interacted with all 42 infants and young children who participated in this study. Of these, 21 had to be excluded because they were “too bent” and three others refused to wear hats, leaving 18 children aged 9 months to 15 months. The experiment has two parts. In one of them, an adult experimenter spent five minutes interacting directly with a child, playing with toys, singing children’s songs, or reading the moonlit night while the child sat on the lap of his parents.
On the other hand, the experimenter turns around and tells the story of another adult while his child plays quietly with his parents.
Topi collects data from 57 brain channels that are known to predict, process, and understand the perspectives of others.
When examining the data, the researchers found that the baby’s brain is synchronized with the brains of adults in several areas during face-to-face sessions that are known to contribute to a full understanding of the world that might help children solve the whole meaning of the story or analyze adult motives for reading stories.
When adults and babies face each other and interact with others, the relationship between them disappears.
This met the researchers’ expectations, but the data was shocking. For example, the strongest ties have taken place in the prefrontal cortex, which are involved in executive education, planning, and surgery, and which were previously thought to be undeveloped in infancy.
We were also surprised to find that the baby’s brain often “guides” the adult brain for a few seconds, indicating that the baby not only receives passively, but can also direct the adult to the next point to focus on: What toys should be included? what words to say.
During communication, adults and children seem to form feedback, added Piazza. That is, an adult brain seems to predict when a baby will smile, a baby brain predicts when an adult will use more baby talk, and both brains track eye contact and attention to toys.
So when babies and adults play together, their brains interact dynamically.
This two-brain approach to neuroscience can open the door to understanding how the relationship between caregivers is interrupted in atypical development, e.g.
Researchers continue to investigate how these neural connections are related to early language learning in preschoolers.