Guest Blogger, Kara Masterson
Rhian Evans Allvin, executive director of the National Association for the Education of Young Children, explains; “There’s an explosion of activity in the first five years of life, more profound than any future years. If we can capitalize on that and maximize the support and learning opportunities, then we really stand a good chance of setting young children on a trajectory of success.” That is just part of the reason why early education is so important. Here are a few other reasons why this kind of education is essential.
Improved Social Skills
Learning how to interact with others is a skill that will benefit children throughout their lifetime. Within an early education setting, students socialize with other students. They learn to communicate, play, and take turns. Young children are also able to adjust better when they start Kindergarten because they have already been around other children in a structured environment. Oral language provides a foundation for literacy development and children have the chance to practice oral language when they are around others.
Enhanced Attention Spans
Children who receive early education will also have many opportunities to practice increasing their attention span. Daily schedules, story time, and classroom activities allow students to enhance their attention span by escalating their interest and level of engagement. Students have opportunities for structured and unstructured play where they are learning to attend to one thing at a time. Focusing on specific tasks is good preparation for the school years.
Develop Cognitive Skills
Children receiving an early education will learn the basics in all academic areas including reading, math, and science. Schools such as Miniapple International Montessori School provide opportunities for children to learn at their own pace through a discovery learning model. The effects of developing cognitive skills early on have shown to benefit children later on in school. In fact, children in early-learning programs show higher levels of achievement throughout school. Alternatively, if a child does have learning issues; they can be identified early.
Early Literacy Skills
Early literacy skills prepare children for so much more than just Kindergarten. Learning letters by sight and sound, phonological awareness, print awareness and vocabulary is quite literally the foundation that students build upon for the rest of their lives as readers. It is widely known that literacy skills are developed early in life and correlate greatly with school achievement. Furthermore, children who have limited experiences with language and literacy will have more difficulty learning to read.
Young children are sponges that soak up all that is happening in the world around them. Early education gives children the opportunity to practice social skills, enhance attention spans, develop cognitive skills, and teach early literacy skills. All children can benefit from early learning opportunities.