Play is ubiquitous amongst the young of almost every species and clearly plays an essential role in learning. However, there is little understanding of how it shapes brain function and especially how it is associated with the brain neuronal, oxygenation and metabolic responses. Our goal is to use state-of-the-art optical neuroimaging (broadband Near-Infrared Spectroscopy) to image non-invasively in freely moving toddlers engaged in interactive play within the World’s first audio-visually contingent fully immersive Cave Automatic Virtual Environment (CAVE). We will explore how the content and regularity of play engages the brain and alters brain oxygenation and metabolic responses of children from 2 to 5 years of age.
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Siddiqui MF, Lloyd-Fox S, Kaynezhad P, Tachtsidis I, Johnson MH, Elwell CE. Non-invasive measurement of a metabolic marker of infant brain function. Sci Rep. 2017 May 2;7(1):1330.
Pinti P, Aichelburg C, Gilbert S, Hamilton A, Hirsch J, Burgess P, Tachtsidis I. A Review on the Use of Wearable Functional Near-Infrared Spectroscopy in Naturalistic Environments. Jpn Psychol Res. 2018 Oct;60(4):347-373
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