Early childhood education sets the foundation for the years to come and is thus a critically important developmental phase. Children make cognitive gains, learn about the basics of social interaction, and develop practices to serve them well in the classroom and beyond during this stage. It’s therefore essential to ensure a child’s mind is engaged during their early years, which can be achieved by following a few key tactics. Here are some of the essentials of quality learning.
Principles for Enriching Early Childhood Learning
1. Ensure Supportive & Responsive Relationships
Strong, responsive relationships with adults give children the emotional support and confidence they need to navigate diverse situations. Specifically, children need serve and return interactions, in which teachers and parents respond with eye contact, words, or other positive reinforcement. These interactions help to foster neural connections, which lay the building blocks for verbal skills and other key cognitive developments.
2. Model Desired Behaviors
Young children look up to trusted adults as role models. They’re likely to imitate the actions they see. Thus, it’s important to display the behaviors you’d like to see in your child. For example, allowing your child to catch you wrapped up in a book may make them more inclined to embrace reading or being read to. You can also model behaviors such as using manners, and prevent children from being exposed to violent or negative behaviors on television or elsewhere.
3. Make Learning Fun
The hippocampus is the part of the brain tied to both emotion and memory. Since these two factors are inextricably linked, children who associate positive experiences with learning may be better able to retain information. For this reason, both parents and educators should foster an engaging and exciting environment in which learning is made to be rewarding and fun but not stressful. Games and crafts are excellent ways to help growing minds to explore new concepts.
If you’re seeking an early childhood learning center where the principles above are fully embraced, turn to Pumpkin Preschool in Fairfield County, CT. Welcoming children ages 6 weeks to 8 years old, this center is staffed with certified teachers who have a passion for enriching young minds. For parents’ convenience, the school has three locations, including Fairfield, Westport, and Shelton. Explore their quality, affordable care options by visiting their website, or call (203) 255-7505 to speak with a staff member.