A day care center is a place where you can take your children to be watched while you go to work, school, or attend to other activities. You may need a center where you can drop off your children early in the morning and pick them in the evening, or you may just need the day care services for a few hours per day. It may even be that you only need the day care center occasionally when you have something you need to attend to. Whatever your needs are, the day care center you choose should provide you with quality care for your education children.
It has been established that early childhood education should have a loving and nurturing component, together with learning experiences which enhance your child’s physical, cognitive and social-emotional development. Quality early education for your child will be determined by the caregivers, the quality of the program offered to the children, and the teaching approaches used.
Quality Of Caregivers
Caregivers should be well qualified and should have specialized training in child care. They should also be creative and nurturing in order to accommodate the individual needs of the children. It is important for you to find out the adult to child ratio at the day care center. A small adult to child ratio is preferred since your child will be able to get sufficient attention.
The turnover ratio of caregivers should be low since a high turnover may mean that the caregivers are not well compensated or they may not be working in a positive environment. It is important that your child has the same caregiver for at least a year since children take time to adjust to new caregivers, which slows down their learning process.
The teaching approach that is offered in a quality day care center should provide a curriculum that has learning goals for the children that are specific. The curriculum should also include aspects from current research on early childhood education that may be relevant to the children. Planned activities for the children and the materials used should promote the development of the children.
The physical development has to do with the growth of the child and the development of motor skills. Cognitive development is the development of problem solving skills and language skills while social-emotional development is the ability of the child to interact appropriately with others. A quality day care center should have a program that enhances all the development aspects.
Most parents do not fully understand the importance of early education when it comes to their children. There is still the idea that a child doesn’t need any special attention before he starts school. While this is certainly true for most parents, other parents are realizing the benefits of early education and how it can help your child later on in life. While the importance of early education is over-emphasized it can play a pivotal role in your child’s upbringing.
It has been proven through studies and research that children who have had parents that help them focus on early education prosper more later on in life. They have the ability to do better in school and in the work force. The developmental areas that are focused on when educating your child do not only remain in the intellectual sphere. Parents also focus on their creative, physical, social and emotional well-being. All of these aspects need to be worked on so that your child can develop normally. By emphasizing on these developmental areas at a young age, it will be simpler for the child and a parent when the child grows older.
Getting Started on Early Education
When a parent is first introduced to early education for their children there seems to be thousands of resources and researchers saying different things. It can be confusing for a first time parent trying to find a way to approach early education.
The best way to start is to start slowly. When purchasing games, books or toys that you think will be educational for your child make sure to review them thoroughly. Often manufacturers sell games that actually have nothing to do with education. Try finding a reputable online store that sells quality books that have been developed by teachers and professors.
Also make a habit of reading every single day to your child, regardless of how old they are. Reading is one of the most important aspects of early education and should not be easily dismissed. Research has shown that you should be reading to your children every day for at least twenty minutes a day. This can help improve their imagination, creativity, their vocabulary and general knowledge.
Don’t become too crazy about educating your children at a young age. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is bringing too much structure into your child’s life. Unstructured play is equally important as structured play in early education.
Melanie Thomas (CEO Melrose Kids Ltd) is a mother of two boys and lives in London, England. Melrose Kids Ltd are the official distributor of Brainy Baby® products in the UK and Ireland.
There are many factors that add up to our child’s education and how it is delivered. School is not the only place for learning and ensuring that the home environment is a comfortable and stimulating area of learning is vital. As parents there are many things that we can do with our children from a very young age to ensure they have the best education and that it is delivered the way it should be. We have put together just a few ideas that will help make sure that your child receives the education that they deserve. Whether they are a budding Little Harvard student, interested in the creative arts or of a mathematical nature there are plenty of things that you can do to help, take a look!
Show interest in your child’s schoolwork and it will pay off. Do not limit the amount of time that you are able to dedicate to your child’s work and extend your support to his/ her teacher too. Keep in contact with their teacher by phone or email so that there is an open relationship to discuss any issues that may arise. This will ensure that both parent and teacher feel comfortable to discuss anything to do with the child’s education.
Study/ Homework Space
School environments are purposely built to ensure that each child has a suitable work space that is ideal for learning. They are made up of plenty of light, a comfortable desk and chair, lots of supplies and space. A similar environment should exist at home where your child can sit down in the evenings to do their homework. This makes things a lot easier for the child to complete assignments and it is the perfect place that you can help out with their work too. Make sure their desk is well equipped with necessary school supplies and a desk lamp for the ideal study space.
Healthy eating habits are vital for children of a young age. Childhood obesity is at an epidemic level and it’s time we do something to prevent it. Eating a healthy breakfast each morning is vital, encourage daily exercise and limit the amount of time spent watching television and playing with games consoles. It is very important that your child has a regular sleeping pattern also, choose a bedtime that suits your child making sure that they get plenty of sleep and stick to it on a daily basis.
Encourage and Succeed
One of the best and most effective ways to prepare our children for success in school in by showing optimism in their work and encouraging them to do well. Success starts at home and by giving your children a sense of ability, they are more likely to achieve goals and progress well in school. By making the expectation clear at home and promoting learning your child will be the best student that they can be.
Most parents know that giving a child crayons and a coloring book is great way to occupy a kid for a few hours. What many do not know is what an important role art plays in a child’s development. In recent years a multitude of studies have been made available that link art education to a variety of important aspects of childhood learning. Art education has been linked to increased creativity, development of problem solving skills and better communication skills just to start. The skills that can be developed through art education are skills that last a lifetime and can benefit a child into adulthood regardless of what career path that child may choose. Understanding the importance of art education will allow this often undervalued development tool gain momentum in main stream education programs.
The first thing that comes to mind for most people when thinking about the relevance of art is the development of creativity. Creativity is an important skill that can be nurtured though art education for children of all ages. Despite popular belief, creativity is relevant to more than just a child’s artistic ability. A creative child will use that skill in all areas of life from problem solving to communication. All of which is needed in everyday learning situations from math and science to reading. The goal of education is to prepare children for their adult life, creativity and problem solving skills are a valuable asset at all points in a person’s life. Many people tend to think that only artists need to be creative but what about the child who is able to come up with a creative solution to resolve a math or science question. It is the child who can resolve problems through reasoning as oppose to memorization that excels in the school setting. These same skills come in handy later on in life when that child finally enters the workforce.
Communication skills are also a valuable asset when it comes to success in school and then later success in the workforce. Art can be used as a method to help children develop better communication skills. Everyone has seen young children draw pictures of their house and family members. These types of drawings allow a child to express certain ideas that may be difficult to express through language. Having a child talk about the pictures they draw then serves as a tool to help develop those necessary language skills. As a child gets older art can be used to express the complex emotions that develop throughout childhood. Communication skills are vital to success in a school setting and increasing a child’s ability to communicate will enrich a child’s life well into the future.
An increase in ability in the areas of problem solving skills, creativity and communication directly translates to better learning in all areas of education. As more people begin to understand the relationship between art and learning hopefully the number of art related programs in schools will increase. There tends to be more focus on learning the skills associated with reading, writing, math and science. Increasing awareness about the role art education plays in developing these skills is a step in the right direction. This will help society create an education program that provides the best learning environment for our children and will in turn create more productive individuals later in life.