Why Early Childhood Education Matters

Saarah Kausar

Founder and Director, Shine Kids Academy, Chennai

The human brain develops most rapidly between birth and age 5 making the preschool years a crucial part of a Child’s education. Early Childhood education is the key to the betterment of society.

Early childhood care and education (ECCE) is more than preparation for primary school. It aims at the holistic development of a child’s social, emotional, cognitive and physical needs in order to build a solid and broad foundation for lifelong learning and wellbeing.

Preschool provides an environment for children to explore, gain a sense of self, play with peers and build self-confidence. Children learn they can accomplish tasks and make decisions without the help of their parents.

Benefits of preschool

  • Early learning: There are many well-known advantages of early childhood education, including instilling a passion for learning.
  • Teachers: Teachers tend to have training in early childhood education or montessori trained.
  • Social interaction: Your child will have lots of opportunities to interact with kids of different ages. This can help them learn, grow, and mature.
  • Activities: Your child will be exposed to a wide range of activities, including art, music, dance and sports.
  • Structure: A regular routine can help children flourish.
  • Elementary admissions: Preschools can help your child gain admission to elementary programs. Many elementary schools look favourably on preschool educated kids.
  • Easier transitions: Exposure to a regular routine early on makes for a smoother transition to formal schooling later on.
  • Safety: Most preschools are a safe and highly supervised place of learning.
  • Regulation: Preschools need to be licensed and regulated by the Government.

Early learning is a unique advantage of preschool. In the right program, your child will learn plenty of academic and pre-academic skills. This can give them a leg up when they start school. In most preschools, your child will learn a wide range of cognitive, social, and language skills. Below are the main ones :

Skills learnt

Cognitive and academic:

  • Literacy: reading and writing
  • Numeracy: the numbers and some basic math, such as addition
  • Science: animals, nature, body parts, and more
  • Learning through play and discovery: observing, navigating, and describing the environment
  • Miscellaneous: the seasons, telling the names of fruits and Vegetables, health and hygiene, and more

Social and emotional:

  • Cooperation
  • Manners and etiquette
  • Independence and self-reliance
  • Resolving conflict

Language and literacy:

  • Vocabulary and identification of objects
  • Communication through sentences
  • Reading
  • Writing

One of the most important benefits of preschool is that it teaches kids how to socialize. More specifically, children learn how to show respect—to adults, other children, and their environment. They also learn how to take turns, cooperate and share with others, as well as problem-solving and compose themselves during stressful situations. Preschool also teaches children important lessons in independence. In addition to preparing children for the separation from mom and dad during kindergarten, preschool offers a safe, fun, and exploratory space for children to develop their self-confidence and sense of self.

The main benefit of preschool is that children gain a solid foundation before beginning their academic career. They are able to socialize with peers and build friendships. They learn basic academic building blocks such as letter names and sounds, numbers, how to hold a book, and sight words. Children learn to be more independent and learn how to solve problems independently.

According to a survey, children who attend preschool do better in kindergarten than those who stay at home with their parents or relatives. Last but not least, preschool education should be a mandatory education which enhances the child fully and makes a child self-confident. It has the possibility to nurture the child into a caring, capable and responsible future citizen.

Saarah Kausar

Founder and Director, Shine Kids Academy, Chennai