Tips to Foster Early Years of Child Development
Created by Rajesh Kumar Updated on Jan 02, 2019
The time for nursery admissions is here again and parents of toddlers are busy with the process of fetching that perfect school of their choice. Most of the parents see school as one of the essential pre-requisite for a bright future of their child. No wonder some of us spend sleepless nights pondering over which schools to consider, how to know which one is better, how to make sure that they get a nursery seat in the chosen school, what if they don’t get a seat in the chosen school... huff-puff-pant ...
In an effort to serve parents to give best to their children in early years, Parentune, organized this workshop on fast-tracking development and choosing the right school for your child. It was conducted by Parentune’s Child Development & Education expert – Mr. Nitin Pandey and Clinical & Child Psychology expert Dr. Ann Simi John. They addressed key issues like important ingredients too early learning years, play, music, exploration, and curiosity and offered handy tips on choosing the right preschool and school. [Know More - How to Foster Cognitive Development For An Introvert Child?]
Ingredients of Early Learning Years of Your Child
Experts took off by citing the common areas of concerns i.e. Play, Music, Exploration & Curiosity etc shared by parents on the Parentune’s website. Some of them being:
- What kind of activities are appropriate for toddlers in terms of holistic development?
- What to look for in a school, what are the parameters to judge a school?
- How to check on those parameters?
Key Tips to Foster Child Development in Early-years[0-6 Years]
In this interactive session, experts gave several tips to parents to expand on the areas related to the wholesome development of children and choosing the right school for them. Read these
1. Brain Development Facts:
It is helpful for parents to be aware of a certain fact related to cognitive development
- Brain development happens in the womb and continues extensively until the age of 3 years. The play is crucial for development till age 6
- The brain continues to develop in spurts till adolescence and cognitive abilities associated with memory, reasoning, problem-solving and thinking continue to emerge throughout childhood.
- Children who feel safe, secure and loved by their parents/caregivers show better brain health and development.
- Experts suggested that parents may consider that their child is able to speak or express his/her needs and emotions at the time of joining a pre-school. For speech-related query, Experts suggested that parents may encourage sentence making and understanding instead of promoting gestures and single word communication with the child.
2. Encourage Exploration:
Children learn through experiences their neural pathways are made through connections made by undergoing different experiences in day to day life.
- Parents may provide safe multi-sensory exposure to children to maximize their cognitive development. Parents may plan for a mix of indoor & outdoor activities.
- Assort a mix of activities for the learner, so that she has something to do that is challenging, as well she likes and can do easily. Encourage self-exploration & inquiry.
- A mix of ‘group play’ and focussed ‘alone – playtime’ can go a long way in the overall growth of the child.
- Expensive toys and teaching aids are not necessarily needed to promote brain health. Quality of interactions with parents coupled with a variety of experiences and activities ranging from challenging to easy makes all the difference
3. Nurture & Encourage them – Be Child's Cheerleaders:
- Encouraging their trials and errors, little victories may tremendously help.
- Parents may help by letting them explore and supporting them by being patient, understanding and available to answer their queries
- Foster creativity – attempt to create wonder.
- Parents may role-model as creative thinkers who love to explore, experiment, strive to find solutions for children to inculcate those skills.
- Parents and educators need to be consistent in their behavior and response to the child’s needs and interests and at the same time stay flexible as the learners need change over time
- Understand your child’s talent and related developmental needs.
- Set appropriate expectations from the child.
Choosing a Pre-school
Key factors to look while choosing a pre-school and how to check each one:
|S.No.||Key Factors||How to Evaluate?|
|1.||Distance to the school – It is recommended that the pre-school should not be more than 5 – 10 km from the house||Can be checked. However if the parents intend to opt for school transport for their child, it may be a better idea to check the bus route for a school.|
|2.||School’s Profile :
||The school profile can be checked through
||The parents may choose to visit the school to check and compare the infrastructure and other facilities as enlisted on the website and with the infrastructure of the other schools. A school which houses dedicated centers of learning have been found better in promoting learning. However, that is not a universal rule. Parents may inquire and check the transport services provided by the school. Parents may check about the status of the seriousness of the school's security policy by checking what kind of procedures and checks do they follow to ensure the safety of children while in school, at the time of dispersal and in the school transport|
|4.||Play equipment||Checking the quality of the play equipment and toys are very important. Parents may see that the play equipment should be decently new, child-friendly, age-appropriate and in ample numbers.|
|5.||Cleanliness||Parents may choose to check the level of hygiene maintained in the school’s toilets and other areas|
|6.||Parent involvement||It is advisable that a school should take parents feedbacks seriously. Parents may check about the same from various sources. Moreover, parents involvement in various school’s activities is a good indicator of schools openness and transparency around the quality of schools undertakings.|
|7.||Happiness and satisfaction level of parents and teachers||Parents may try to find out by generally interacting with teachers about the school's atmosphere, policies, and workload to gauge the working environment for teachers. Does the school provide enrichment programs for the teachers? How well the school treats its teachers most of the times corresponds to the better performance of teachers. Also, interactions with the school’s parents can indicate well about the overall workings of the school. You may interact with fellow parents on parentune from the school.|
|8.||Engagement of school in environmental and social community programs||Schools that promote sensitivity around the issues concerning the environment, good social practices and community causes are better at instilling ethics and values in children.|
Each child is different and so are the parental expectations from the school. Experts concluded that parents can find a school that best suits their child’s developmental needs keeping in mind their child’s temperament, needs and own expectations around what are most important aspects to them related to the educational and co-curricular services offered by the school.
Education is what remains after one has forgotten what one has learned in school. ~ Albert Einstein
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