Children do or become what they are exposed to. Parents' every action gets imprinted in children's minds. Seeing them weeding in the garden, planting flowers, taking care of things and people around the home, paying attention to everything, big and small, will make a deep impression on children. Quickly enough, the time comes when the little ones are watching their parents wide-eyed and taking in all that they are doing through the day. Parents tend to be the first models to follow.
However, with both parents working outside their homes, a trend that is here to stay, parents look for ways in which children can be quickly acclimated to the world outside. It starts with preschooling, usually when the little ones are between 2 and 4 years of age.
At preschools, they learn to socialize and experience playful learning. They are exposed to a number of skills, such as improving their vocabulary, developing their motor and spatial skills, and acquiring social skills. They also learn to play independently. Children absorb what they see as part of early childhood learning, and their curiosity knows no bounds.
VPK, the voluntary prekindergarten for 4-year olds is, as the name suggests, a voluntary program to ease the transition into kindergarten. A transition can be important for children to develop confidence before they enter kindergarten. VPK helps build on the learning from preschool, with more structure and deeper engagement in learning. A few art projects, some small experiments, a little math are part of the curriculum in a VPK program.
Children also learn to listen and follow instructions and work in a team. In effect, VPK lays a strong foundation by refining the playful learning phase, setting children on the path to more structured learning. These are important qualities to acquire before they enter kindergarten.
Early Childhood Education
Early childhood education is more than learning the alphabet or numbers. The initial years of child development can chart the course for all future development. Early childhood education is critical for brain development and must include activities that strengthen the physical, mental, and emotional skills.
What Makes A Good Preschool?
Preschools or daycare providers must keep in mind that their environment strongly influences children, and they should be able to provide a holistic program to foster social, emotional, cognitive, and physical development.
Therefore, a good preschool would have a nurturing and caring environment, a space where children learn by example, and one that does more than babysitting. It would be a place with qualified individuals with a deep understanding of early childhood and how to develop a creative curriculum that includes planned and unplanned activities.