How Early Childhood Education from a Certified Daycare Centre Can Benefit Your Child for a Lifetime
It’s that time of year when kids are starting school or daycare for the first time. And while this time can be nerve-wracking for parents and kids alike, rest assured knowing your kid is in good hands at a certified daycare that understands the value and benefit of early childhood education.
Early childhood education (ECE) is a field of education that helps children through their early development, setting them up for future success and further education. ECE at a daycare centre helps children through their early development and offers several benefits that will last for years.
Here’s a look at what ECE is, how it helps children, and why a certified daycare is a great place to help your child learn, grow, and develop.
What Is Considered Early Childhood Education?
Early childhood education helps preschool-age children develop the skills necessary to succeed in life. ECE is offered at quality daycare centres with trained and certified educators. ECE at daycares promotes cognitive, physical, emotional, and social development through play and various types of engaging activities.
What are the Benefits of Early Childhood Education?
Quality ECE provides a variety of benefits for young children, and for their families and communities. Young preschool-age children learn best when they receive kind and supportive treatment from teachers and parents, when they interact with peers, and when they don’t feel pressured to learn.
Young children also learn more when educational and instructional activities only take up a small portion of their day.
With this ECE philosophy, kids develop:
Better Social Skills
What better way to learn how to socialize than by socializing with teachers and peers every day? Through the social environment of daycare, children learn social skills from each other and their teachers, such as:
- Listening to others;
- Expressing their ideas;
- Making friends; and,
- Taking responsibility for their actions.
Through ECE at a daycare centre, children learn how to appropriately engage and communicate with peers and adults, which is essential for success in school and relationships at home and throughout life.
Better Performance in School
Children who get an early education are often better prepared for grade school. As a result, they tend to have a reduced need for special education instruction throughout their years in school. Quality ECE programs build a strong foundation for a child’s academic development along with their social, emotional, mental, and physical development.
Increased Attention Spans
Learning how to listen to others and follow instructions is another useful skill that will help kids throughout their education and their lives. Children in ECE programs also learn to work with others and work independently, focusing on the task at hand. In a world of fast-paced technology, having a good attention span is a high-quality skill.
A Love of Education
ECE helps build confidence and curiosity in children as they learn. And these traits also help them perform better in school since they have the enthusiasm to learn. They also learn how to manage and overcome challenges, become resilient, and transition well to elementary school.
An appreciation for lifelong learning can also move outside of the classroom, such as with learning the arts—music, dance, singing—or learning other useful skills such as cooking and carpentry.
Studies show that children who attend ECE preschool programs are more likely to graduate from high school with fewer behavioural problems, attend college, and develop into responsible adults.
How Do Children Develop?
While child development is important at any age, the first five years of a child’s life are the most critical for development. This is because a child’s brain develops much faster during these five years than in any other time in their life.
A child’s early experiences—what they see, hear, touch, taste, and smell—stimulate their brain to create millions of connections. These connections are the foundation of a child’s health, learning, and behaviour.
A child’s relationships will affect all stages and areas of their development since relationships are experiences and children learn through experiences. Whether through their own relationships or by watching interactions between other relationships, children learn about the world around them with these interactions, including how to behave, socialize, and communicate with others.
What Are the Four Major Developmental Areas of Child Development?
1. Cognitive Development
A child’s ability to solve problems, such as learning how to explore an environment with their eyes, or learning how to do simple math.
2. Social and Emotional Development
How a child interacts with others and controls their own emotions (self-control). Examples include a child smiling, waving, and waiting their turn in line to play a game.
3. Speech and Language Development
A child’s ability to understand and use language, such as being able to correctly name parts of their body, or say “feet” instead of “foots.”
4. Fine and Gross Motor Skill Development
Fine motor skill development is a child’s ability to use small muscles, such as in their hands and feet to become dexterous. This includes being able to hold a spoon while eating, pick up small objects, and use a crayon to draw.
Gross motor skills are a child’s ability to use large muscles, e.g. learning how to sit up, pull up, walk, and skip.
What Is the ECE Curriculum?
A curriculum is everything that students learn in a class.
In early childhood, children learn mostly through play. This type of learning is invaluable and cannot be matched with other types of learning. Play is creative, unique, and self-directed learning. Through play, children learn how to think, problem solve, communicate, move, and interact with others.
So play must make up a large part of an ECE curriculum. Early childhood educators will watch children play and provide them with the appropriate language to describe what the children are experiencing. It is also up to educators to provide rich, engaging environments and opportunities for different types of play.
The ECE curriculum at Kids Kingdom is based on Ontario’s ELECT (Early Learning for Every Child Today) initiative. The curriculum uses various types of tools and play to provide an enriching developmental environment, such as indoor and outdoor activities, stories, lessons, and interactive play.
These activities and types of play help kids develop physically, emotionally, cognitively, and socially.
How Does A Child Learn Through Play?
Every experience is a learning opportunity for children, especially during play. Children learn from experiences with peers and educators while playing. And they also learn from themselves, building confidence, curiosity, and creativity.
For example, say two young children are playing with a dollhouse. Through this play, they are developing language for homes, families, relationships, and furniture. They are also learning critical thinking skills, such as how to organize the dollhouse and how to consider different perspectives. The same ease of learning goes for all other types of play.
When choosing a daycare centre to send your little one this fall, it’s important to emphasize the importance of choosing one that promotes play and the core concepts of early childhood education to nourish your child’s development.