What Makes A High Quality Early Childhood Education
While high quality early childhood education programs are shown to have incredibly strong effects on a child’s future success, many Australians still go without. When living in circumstances where resources are few and far between, the logic behind attending a high quality early education centre becomes redundant because parents do not have access to such programs due to financial circumstances or lack of availability in the area where they live. In this post we discuss the facets of a high quality early childhood education program; what needs to be considered to ensure children from all backgrounds receive the highest quality education experience possible from day one.
Comprehensive Learning Criteria
A successful preschool program will communicate lessons that teach emotional, social and physical development as well as academic development. Lessons should emphasize guided learning opportunities that are language-rich and hands-on. Much pre-class preparation is required on the behalf of teachers to increase the likelihood that the curriculum will be taken on-board by children as they learn new skills in the areas listed above.
Well-planned and effective assessments of children as they complete their early childhood learning are crucial to ensuring lifelong success. By assessing children on a frequent basis, preschool teachers can adjust their teaching plans to include content that children are evidently struggling to learn. Assessments should include the whole preschool rigmarole: emotional, social and physical development as well as academic ability. Children’s progress should be tracked over time and lessons should cater to students’ individual needs and abilities.
Professional Knowledge and Skill
Nearly all preschool programs with a track record of positive outcomes require their lead teachers to have at least a bachelor’s degree in early childhood education. This is corroborated by the fact the studies show teachers’ specialised knowledge about early childhood development is particularly important for ensuring lifelong success for students. What’s more, teachers need to be well-prepared for classes and ensure they have the knowledge to provide engaging interactions and energetic classroom environments so that effective learning may take place.
One of the most effective ways to ensure staff are well-trained and qualified to deliver positive classroom experiences is to increase compensation for preschool teachers. This is especially true given the high rate of staff turnover in the early childhood education sector.
Ongoing Support for Teachers
Strong support for teachers, including access to resources, coaching and mentoring appears to be linked to strong teacher-student interactions, less teacher burnout and increased teacher retention. Support much be given to enable student-parent interaction on a meaningful level too. Professional support ensures acceptance of all families by making sure parents are seen as role models. This is achieved by working with families in a collaborative way that generates understanding and appreciation of individual family units.
If you are looking to enrol your children in a high quality early education program, please contact WillowBee Early Learning Centre to ask any questions or make an enrolment. We have been operating for over a decade on Sydney’s Lower North Shore and are qualified and trained to provide each child who attends our centre with a high quality learning experience. We will work with you as parents to make sure your children are engaging fully within the classroom setting and learning the skills that will catapult them into success for the rest of their lives.