As a parent or an educator, you have the power to guide the development of small children in your care. Even little babies are ready to learn, you just need to give them enough opportunities. By providing safe and fun learning environments, you can support early brain development and motivate them for lifelong learning.
The most significant brain development happens in the first years of life. Everything and everyone around a child can greatly influence this opportunity to grow and develop. Early childhood educators and parents can influence brain development by providing programs and activities that encourage active learning.
As the brain grows during childhood and adolescence, the cortex gets thinner as its cells are pruned back and eliminated. The more stimulation that children have through active learning, the thinner and the more developed their brain will be.
Just think about that for a moment: you may not be available all the time when your grown-up child is faced with important choices and problems about experimenting, choosing friends, engaging in relationships, or studying. However, as a parent, you have the power to lay the foundation for your children to make good decisions by promoting their ability to analyze situations, receive and evaluate information, or to balance their desire for a short-term reward with one for a long-term, greater goal, from a very young age.
If brain development isn’t convincing enough, below are more benefits of early childhood education.
Every parent knows that it’s important to introduce their children to other children and help them find friends and friendship groups. Socialization with people of the same age other than the family members in a safe and friendly environment is a foundational element of a child’s life.
It helps children overcome shyness and become confident. If you never leave your child with other children, they will have fewer opportunities for social development.
Understand Teamwork and Cooperation
Learning how to work with others, cooperate, share, take turns, and persevere within a safe environment with a professional educator is crucial for a child’s development. It’s especially important if you have only one child who isn’t used to sharing and cooperating with other siblings at home. Even though it’s a difficult lesson, it’s really important children learn it very early.
Encourage Holistic Development
Holistic development is necessary to build the foundation for a social, emotional, physical, and mental development of a child, which will prepare them for the challenges of adulthood.
Early childhood educators should be able to identify areas where a child needs their support and create programs and activities around these needs. Other children can also help your child develop because they are usually very inclusive and cooperative.
Motivation for Lifelong Learning
Your children should have lessons in a fun and active way to encourage them to become more effective learners. As a parent, you can inspire a thirst for learning with enthusiasm and motivation. Love for learning – discovery, reading, nature, and science – takes root when a child is young.
Convey the Value of Education
As a parent, you can become a positive role model and provide actual experiences to convey the value of learning to your child. While parents are the biggest influences in a child’s early life, introducing them to other children in a safe environment gives them a new perspective on the importance of learning. This behavior will remain with children throughout their journey. You will also demonstrate the importance of education.
Early childhood education helps children understand why it’s important to respect others. This is not only about people and belongings but it can also mean respect for the environment, both local and global. One of the best places to learn this is in a preschool environment, where everyone is respected and manners and civility are taught and encouraged.
Demonstrating and encouraging teamwork and collaboration can teach respect for the opinions of other people, equality, and listening. Many activities for little children are centered around teamwork to cultivate positive behaviors. A child who learns how to work with other children will be more socially attuned and successful in life.
It’s important that parents and educators help children develop resilience, and it’s better to start early. By creating fair and consistent learning environments, with predictable consequences for certain actions, children will develop skills in controlling and managing their emotions.
Educators should provide challenges and tasks where children can solve problems and learn through their own experiences. They may experience losing a game, bumps, or bruises, but this is important for building strategies for other challenges.
During the first year, a child uses every opportunity to discover new friends, environments, and experiences. They are very imaginative and lively. Early childhood educators should be able to balance this zest with the ability to follow directions, listen and get new information, attend to tasks, and participate in activities to develop concentration.
Every day as adults, we are usually in situations where we test our patience. Children should have situations and opportunities where they can explore and practice patience as well. By teaching through role modeling, real experiences, and examples, children can develop patience and learn to listen to others and wait. For example, children should be able to wait in line for a game, the playground, toys, and your attention.
Confidence and Self-Esteem
When children are confident, they aren’t afraid to explore their interests, talents, and skills. A strong sense of wellbeing allows them to be optimistic about life. You can achieve this by encouraging positive interactions with other children and promoting a healthy and secure view of themselves. It will help them approach situations with confidence.
Exposure to Diversity
Even very young children should value diversity and difference. Early childhood education helps them accept differences, and contribute to society. Children should know that everyone is special with their own ethnicity and beliefs.
Young children should do so much more than just play. While there are basic learning benefits of early childhood education, the advances they get towards becoming happy and confident people are invaluable.