Early Childhood Education is beneficial to every Nigerian child
Early childhood education (ECE) is a starting point for a child’s development and the key foundation in our educational system. Also known as pre-primary education, it is the education given to children before the age of acquiring primary education.
ECE is enriched by the formal training given to children which makes them ready for primary education. It is considered very crucial to a child’s subsequent physical, mental and social development.
In modern society, it has been established that the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) is the bedrock upon which all other educational levels are built. Once a child misses that early stage, it is usually challenging for the learner to get back to the basics.
The Importance of Early Childhood Education
The importance of pre-primary education cannot be overemphasized. The human brain develops the vast majority of its neurons and is most receptive to learning between birth and three years of age. It enables children to improve their self-confidence since they are exposed to interaction with their peers and adults.
ECE enhances independence and also widens their understanding of home and school environments. This is vital to the child, parents and society because it permits a smooth transition from home to school, and therefore fosters interaction with other people outside immediate family members.
Early childhood education enhances attention span and sharpens the child’s cognitive domain and emotional development through creativity and the exploration of nature, art and music. At this stage, children also learn to share and cooperate with others.
Experts agree that play is very important in learning and emotional development of all children. Play is great fun for the children and further helps them develop relationships, social skills, values and ethics; it should always be considered an essential part of a child’s early education.
Functional play helps children to develop motor and practice skills, this kind of play is normally done with toys or objects that are stackable and can be filled with water or sand or other interesting outdoor activities that can harness the skills of the children.
Water play or sand play is favourite amongst preschool children and a valuable teaching tool as children are exposed to learning in a fun way with relatable things found in the environment.