Very young children require a lot of time and input on the part of their caregivers, teachers, and larger community in order to set them up for success later in life. The formative years are crucial for establishing habits and knowledge that individuals can draw on as they continue to develop and grow. Without a solid foundation, children are at a greater risk of underperforming both academically and socially.

It is vital, therefore, that early childhood education (ECE) sets children up for success by enabling them to navigate both the formal schooling system and general life. This means that children need to gain skills in problem-solving, grow confidence to ask questions, learn how to be disciplined in completing tasks, and show respect to their teachers and classmates. With effective ECE that is both engaging and age-appropriate, young children are better able to gain such skills.

Research-based ECE also promotes children’s practical development and increased knowledge in aspects like reading, writing, arithmetic, and shape and colour recognition. Through a combination of both formal and informal activities, ECE teachers can ensure that children are well prepared to enter the schooling system, build a desire in learners for life-long learning, and aid children in effectively navigating the world around them.

Since it is no simple task to prepare young children either for formal schooling or their later adult lives, more and more ECE centres are requiring teachers to have at least a Graduate Diploma of Teaching ECE level education to fulfil their teaching duties. This increased value of ECE and the greater expectations posed on ECE teachers to be effective in their teaching approaches, means that an ever-increasing number of children will have better access to quality education that can prepare them for both academic and everyday-life success.

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