44. The Most Critical Stage in Education is the First
In primary school, children are taught math, science, social studies, and language arts. These are known as the core subjects. If you wait until this stage to be intentional about a child's learning you have already missed the most critical developmental stage. By the age of five children have already learned so many of life's most important lessons.
It is between the ages of zero to five that children learn the most and and in those years, most of that learning happens between ages zero to three. Long, before our children are speaking to us, they are rapidly learning from us and from their environment. Whether your child is home or in childcare, it is imperative to be intentional about the modeling, experiences, and environment you offer your child from the beginning.
Early childhood education is a holistic approach to the development of children. Educators allow children to explore and learn the core subjects as well as life skills by guiding the development of children's social, emotional, cognitive, and physical skills. While children are given lessons in primary school, in a quality early childhood setting children are offered learning experiences. These are educational multi modal play experiences that engage children through their senses and meet them where they are developmentally to guide them and their development forward.
Children during this stage are learning by observing, exploring, discovering, and doing. It is by tummy time and floor play that the infant learns to roll over. It is by walking that the toddlers learn to run. It is by listening that a child learns to speak. It is by working through problems that children become skilled at finding solutions. This learning happens in play experiences that allow children to explore, discover, interact, and most importantly, imagine.