Why Early Childhood Education Matters Now More Than Ever
In this article, you will learn about why early childhood education matters now more than ever. With the world changing at swift speed and amazing innovation becoming the order of the day, having the new generation prepared for this reality is something that is staring us all in the face. With driverless cars and smart home assistants ruling the roost and more and more jobs becoming automated, to say that the careers of the future are slated to change,
Will be an understatement. What will remain in trend however is intelligence and creativity, both of which can be developed in the early childhood years.
Given the importance of early childhood education, parents are often left wondering what They can do to enhance it. For that matter a lot actually The first and foremost thing to do is to start communicating with the child early. While it may seem like an ineffective Exercise to talk to a child who cannot yet respond, but the fact is that the child is absorbing every bit of what you are saying and it is these continuous interactions with him /her that will go a long way in helping the child develop a strong vocabulary. Reading to a child who seemingly may not understand what is being read to him is also a great linguistic enabler.
What can Parents do to Ensure their Child is off to the Best Start?
Parent-child communication is the key. Research shows that well before a child speaks, they are actively
listening. Infants’ use parental input to learn the elementary structure of speech and language, such as different phonemes and words. But it can be tough to keep the conversation going with a child who does not yet speak back. Thus talking is teaching.
Importance of early childhood development can be gauged by the ties children develop with their parents and their first learning experience intensely affect their physical, cognitive, emotional and social development and have a direct impact on their overall development and on the adult they will become.
As the children grow up, they understand and adopt the way they perceive the world around them –in their families, neighbours and surroundings these in turn pave way for healthy physical and mental development. Their communication skills that are their first connect in form of reading, story -telling, circle time help them to enrich vocabulary.
The basic learning structure developed for the kids is shaped on their shared relationship with family, teachers and the peers. This is the time when the social and emotional interactions take place in terms of fulfilment of basic necessities as food, shelter, love, warmth and protection. This healthy social and emotional factor determines the child’s success in school and life as an adult. The same has been indicated by studies that kids who
start off with deficits in basic skills fail to catch up to peers by later grades.
Early childhood education is just honing and moulding the holistic growth of the child that eventually prepares him for his lifelong journey.
The essential benefits of early childhood education can be re-iterated in terms of its inculcating socialization and concept of cooperation in the child. It also encourages holistic development and creates enthusiasm in the child for lifelong learning. It stresses on value of education through experience, respect, teamwork, resilience, concentration and patience. It develops confidence and self-esteem and motivates children by exposure to diversity.
With such a long list of ECE advantages, it is certain that the kids should not be allowed to miss the opportunities of becoming a life- long learner. ASPAM Pre-schools one of the best pre-schools in Noida is equipped with all the facilities and international pedagogical skills to nurture, support and raise potentially successful future ready global citizens.
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Lessons in Nurturing Empathy and Caring in Young Toddlers
In this article, you will learn about lessons in nurturing empathy and caring in young toddlers.”Empathy” basically means the ability to understand and share the feelings and viewpoints of others and is the widely recognized the fundamental 21st century proficiency. It can also be called the corner stone of universal citizenship. We learn about other people and about world events, but without empathy, we do not necessarily care what’s happening and the same goes for the kids as without feelings for others, they won’t be able to empathize.
The feeling of empathy cannot be developed overnight or can be taught when we attain adulthood, on the contrary it needs to be developed from a very young age. Consequently the pioneers of early childhood programme such as illustrious Maria Montessori has included SEL (Socio-emotional learning) as one of the pillars of the ECE (Early Childhood Education).
There are three major social-emotional and cognitive skills that come together to create the ability to empathize.
These are :
1. Self-Consciousness –
The ability to identify and label one’s own feelings and motivations.
2. Perspective-Taking –
The ability to see things from someone else’s point of view.
3. An Understanding of Origin-and-Consequence –
How one’s own actions might impact others.
A few recommended ways to teach empathy to the toddlers’ are :
– Label the Feeling
– Praise Empathetic Behaviour
– Encourage Pre-schooler to Talk about his Feelings and Yours
– Teach Verbal Cues
– Teach Non-Verbal Cues
– Teach Basic Rules of Politeness
– Don’t Use Anger to Control the Child
– Set an Example
– Help kids develop a moral identity
– Help Kids Find their Inner Hero
– Encourage Empathy Through Stories
– Validate the Child’s Difficult Emotions
– Use Pretend Play
Milestones in Empathy in the Toddler can be Celebrated when he :
– Establishes a Secure, Strong, Loving Relationship with you
– Begins to use Social Referencing
– Develops a Theory of Mind i.e. his own Understanding of Situations
– Recognizes One’s Self as an Individual Different from his Parents
When a child grows a little older, he still needs to acquire Social Emotional learning that can be defined as “social and emotional competence” i.e. “the ability to understand, manage, and express the social and emotional aspects of one’s life in ways that enable the successful management of life tasks such as learning, forming relationships, solving everyday problems, and adapting to the complex demands of growth and development.”
The perspective changes when the child becomes a little older but the intent and purpose of inculcating empathy remains the same. Thus empathy in other words is simply an ability to imagine how someone else is feeling in a particular situation and respond with care. This is a very complex skill to develop so when a child is able to empathize with another person it basically suggests that the child :
– Understands that he is his own person
– Understands that others can have different thoughts and feelings than he has
– Recognizes the common feelings as happiness, surprise, anger, disappointment, sadness and many such feelings
– Is able to look at a particular situation and imagine how he might feel in this moment if he had been in the other person’s place.
– Can imagine what response might be appropriate or comforting in that particular situation
With consistent scaffolding from teachers, young children can begin to internalize these behaviours and this makes them more independent. This new found independence then lays foundation of empathy. It should be remembered that the young students need continued guidance and opportunities for practicing empathy and care as they grow and their cognitive and social skills become more progressive and pronounced. ASPAM Pre-school, one of the best schools in Noida and Indirapuram has integrated such activities as a part of their customized curriculum to nurture in the pre-schoolers lessons of empathy so as to develop them into sensitive and caring adults.
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