How Children Learn (Early Learning and Teaching): Indicators of Children's Development and Learning

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  • The curriculum is the sum total of possible experiences that could be provided to children in early childcare centers. Interactions with children must be appealing to compel children’s involvement and learning.

  • There is utmost primacy of how the curriculum or content is used with children in early learning settings. Experiences fostering development in all domains must be included in a day keeping in mind the interdependence of growth in different domains.

  • Curriculum in preschool encompasses the entire range of preschool experiences and opportunities for learning designed and planned for the total and integrated development of children.

Indicators of Children’S Development and Learning

  • Babies are born ready to learn and their brain develops by use. In fact, it is often said that of the brain, ‘use it or lose it’. We have to ensure that we are providing enough warm interactions of stoking children’s sensory capacities to reach their optimal competence. Developmental milestones describe emergence of new capacity or skill.

  • As they grow, they form different relations. No two children learn in the same way or at the same pace. Some children walk earlier while some may talk earlier. How we review that learning is occurring is by watching for changes also called as progress.

How Children Learn

  • Children learn in different ways. Some learn by seeing, some by hearing, some by listening, some by doing. Giving your child chances to play with other children is a great way to develop skills needed to get on with others. There is a possibility of tremendous social, emotional, physical and cognitive development, and it can come and go before you know it.

  • For children, early learning is best through play, stories, conversations, songs, rhythm, movement and opportunity to explore.

Children learn best by actively engaging with the environment. This may, in the early years include:

Children Learn Best by Actively Engaging with the Environment. This May, in the Early Years Include
Children learn best by actively engaging with the environment. This may, in the early years include

Development capacity

Learning

observing things, watching faces responding to color, shape, voices

listening to sounds and rhythm making sounds and singing

exploring learning by experiencing

experimenting by turning things around curiosity and interest

asking questions like, “Why?’“ solving problems

experimenting with textures or objects categorizing and

listening, mimicking, repeating, practicing building skills

moving to rhythm, repeating small stories memory, recall and sequence

responding to color, shape, voices

making sounds and singing

learning by experiencing

curiosity and interest

solving problems

categorizing and building skills

memory, recall and sequence

Indicators of Progress

  • Regular observations, keeping daily records of individual child are some common methods. It is through such diary noting and records that parents are informed of their children’s unique features as well as how they compare with age related behavior referred as ‘age norms’.

  • Children gain cognitive progress when they are able to sit and listen to a story or engage in completing a puzzle. Social progress is defined when children are together and may play individually with blocks or share crayons while painting, wait for a turn on the swing etc.

  • Children also learn communication skills, enrich their expressive vocabulary and participate in art, music and dance. They also acquire early numeracy and literacy as they display interest in similar sounds, identifying sounds with other similar sounds and repetition of numbers.

  • Barrier-free and supportive interventions besides addressing ability, build empathy and awareness for co-existence. Development opportunities have to provide variations in activities as development is integrated and growth is holistic as well as dependent on domain interdependence.

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