A child’s early years comprises the first five years of his or her life. Many educational and development theories say that this period of a child’s life is the most important. There are many researches that support this point. Harvard University’s Center on the Developing Child says that the time from birth up to his or her fifth birthday is the “foundation for a prosperous and sustainable society.”
Plato, an ancient Greek philosopher, one of the most widely read scholars, studied so much about learning and development. He left us with this very important note through his work “The Republic”:
“… the beginning is the most important part of any work, especially in the case of a young and tender thing; for that is the time at which the character is being formed and the desired impression is more readily taken.”
This tells us that we must treat the child’s early years as the fundamental stage for developing not only the brain or cognitive skills but also all the other aspects of one’s learning capability – emotional, physical, and social skills.
Listed below are some of the main reasons proving the early childhood years as the most important stage in learning and development.
- In every second of the first few years of a child’s life, millions of neural connections, a.k.a. the brain’s architecture, are formed. These connections serve as the main foundation that dictates a person’s future cognition, health, and behavior.
- The brain’s “elasticity” decreases as one ages. Therefore, the early years of the child is the point when the brain is most flexible. At this time, the kids are able to adapt to various environmental and social situations and challenges.
- Also because of this flexibility, a child’s brain is more perceptive and able to learn multiple languages. Bilingualism, based on this research, decreases the adult’s brain’s cognitive deterioration. So if your child is bi- or multilingual, there is less occurrence of dementia, Alzheimer’s disease and the like compared to those who are monolingual.
- The social, emotional, physical, and cognitive skills a child has developed through his or her early years become the bases of that child’s future performance at school, profession, or community.
These are just some reasons but they carry so much weight that justifies why every parent needs to carefully consider early childhood development support from experts. If the parents are not able to employ the right methods in caring for a growing child, they will not be able to help that child maximize his or her full potential as a human being later on in life.
In UAE, there are many childcare facilities abound but to ensure proper early stages teaching and curriculum, parents can hire the best British curriculum schools in Dubai. The Arcadia Preparatory School has included the Early Years Foundation Stage (EYFS) standards in their school curriculum. To know more about what the school offers, visit their site at http://arcadia.sch.ae/.