From the perspective of a personified brain, the reader is presented a story of brain development from conception to old age. Inspired by narrative ideas, metaphors will be used throughout to simplify complex neuroscientific ideas that underpin our understanding of the dynamic interplay between brain development and nurturance. This chapter aims to integrate neuroscience, clinical psychology and neuropsychology. It is designed to be a user-friendly basic rendition of brain development accessible for all professionals working with our children and young people with acquired brain injury.
The chapter signposts to many of the major theories and ideas that are the foundation of paediatric neurorehabilitation – e.g. developmental psychology and plasticity. It talks of the brain’s vulnerabilities and sensitive periods, as well as its potential for recovery.