For Families


  • A newborn’s brain has about 100 billion neurons.
  • Few or no more will be produced during the rest of the child’s years.
  • By the time a child turns 3 years of age, about 85% of his or her brain’s core structure has been formed.
  • A child’s mind develops the most during the first five years of life!

Over the past several years, our society has learned that the years from birth to age six are critical for laying a foundation of success for a child’s future.  The quality of care that children receive during this time period affects their school readiness and success, impacting them for a lifetime.  Whether at home or in child care, our children need to have positive experiences that allow them to play and learn in supportive environments.  Fortunately, we have learned a great deal about what it takes to provide a child with a quality early care and education experience.

Why is quality important?

Research has demonstrated that the quality of care and education that a child receives in the early years can determine whether he or she will travel a path of prosperity or one of poverty. Studies show children who receive high-quality care are more likely to be employed, have higher graduation rates, larger median incomes and lower arrest records than children with no early childhood instruction.  These results demonstrate that high-quality early education promotes school readiness and allows children to become more productive adults.

To see firsthand what enrollment in a quality program can mean to a child, watch this short but powerful video clip from Pre-K Now.  It follows five children, including one learning English, throughout the school year and demonstrates the positive impact of high-quality Pre-K.

Pennsylvania’s Promise for Children’s infant Early Learning GPS (Guiding Parents Smoothly) is an interactive way for families to se the right course for their children’s success. in kindergarten and beyond. Visit and click on the logo.

Born Learning

PBS Kids

Pennsylvania’s Promise for Children

Zero to Three