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Integral Education: Strategic Challenges & Road-Map ahead (IX). Strategic Innovation in Education – Why Pre-School matters? (Part E).

Good afternoon. We are back from Thanksgiving long weekend, and ready to start again.

girl and a dog“Early childhood experiences have a profound impact on brain development, affecting learning, health, behavior, and ultimately, lifetime opportunities. The right investments in the physical, cognitive, linguistic, and social-emotional development of young children —from before birth through their transition to primary school—are critical to putting children on the path to success in school and beyond, increasing their adult wages in the future”.

“Cognitive and non-cognitive abilities—including key workforce skills such as motivation, persistence, self-regulation, and self-control—are important for a productive workforce, and deficits that emerge at early childhood are difficult to change”. Buffett Early Childhood Institute at the University of Nebraska have stated that at-risk children who do not receive a high-quality pre-school are significative:

Buffett´s school life success.jpg

There is a relation between high-quality early childhood education and life success. Source: Buffett Institute.

Pre-school is the official time shift from mom to an external place called pre-school or nursery school. It is an entity where kids “officially” gather to join a formal institution (called nursery by many) for early childhood education, conducted by trained early childhood specialists.  It is the phase where other kids also do the same.

The pre-school time starts usually when the kids turn out to be 3 years old. In some entities, kids may be accepted between 2.5 to 3. Why Pre-school matters?

The pre-school years are usually two, from 3 to 4 years old, and from 4 to 5 years old. These two years are defined as Early Childhood Education.  “Early Childhood Education or Preschool can help children develop intellectually and socially, and gives them an advantage over other kids when kindergarten starts”. Children who attend excellent pre-schools are ready to join kindergarten. Let´s listen to the experts:

From the point of view of brain development, pre-school is also very important. Let´s see the following video:

Good pre-schools are always full and booked. And expensive. The top schools are usually booked since the kids are born!

Now that we have understood the importance of pre-school years and before showing you the physical, social, emotional, language and cognitive thinking milestones for pre-schoolers, let me remark why investing in early childhood education is one of the smartest things a country can do to eliminate extreme poverty, boost shared prosperity, and create the human capital needed for economies to diversify and grow.

Early childhood experiences have a profound impact on brain development—affecting learning, health, behavior and ultimately, income. Let´s see what the World Bank  Group (WBG) has researched. According to the WBG, there are millions of young children not reaching their full potential because of inadequate nutrition, a lack of early stimulation after the baby is born, lack of a learning structural system for early childhood education and nurturing care; and finally, because of exposure to external or internal adverse stress.

“In low and middle-income countries across the world, 250 million children under the age of five are at risk of not reaching their developmental potential because of poverty and stunting (or low height for age).World-Bank-ECD-infographic-FINAL-780px.gif

  • In Africa alone, one-third of children are underdeveloped.
  • Worldwide, only half of all three to six-year-olds have access to pre-primary education (pre-school and kindergarten). In low-income countries, just one in five children has access to preschool.
  • One in 200 children in the world is displaced, exposing them to the kind of stress that can undermine their development.
  • Investments in young children are minimal: in Sub-Saharan Africa, just 2 percent of the education budget goes to pre-primary education, while in Latin America government spending on children under 5 is a third of that for children 6 to 11.
  • A 20-year study of children in Jamaica by Nobel laureate James Heckman, Paul Gertler, and others showed that early stimulation interventions for infants and toddlers increased their future earnings by 25 percent—equivalent to adults who grew up in wealthier households.
  • A World Bank Group (WBG) analysis of the long-term benefits of early childhood education in 12 countries found that children who attend preschool stay in school for nearly a year longer, on average, and are more likely to be employed in high-skilled jobs.
  • Children in a long-term study in Guatemala who were not stunted were much more likely to escape poverty as adults and earned income, of 5 to 50 percent higher than children who were stunted as children”.
  • In fact, one study found that every dollar invested in early childhood well-being has the potential to produce approximately $8 in returns for society.

Mckinsey has just published an article in relation to how governments and states can solve this situation. Governments must ensure that all children receive high-quality services and the support they need for their well-being from birth through age five. This means supporting their physical health, cognitive development, and social and emotional health. Reaching only one of these dimensions is simply not enough.

Mckinsey support elements

Four Support Elements are required in Early Childhood Education: Overall enablers, Physical health, cognitive functioning, and Social-emotional skills. Source: McKinsey & Company.

Now that we have understood the connection between pre-school years or early childhood education and the future success of people; we will continue with the pre-schoolers milestones. Stay tuned.

To be continued. Thanks. bee

Source References utilized for this article:

Disclaimer: All the presentation slides shown on this blog are prepared by Eleonora Escalante MBA-MEng. Nevertheless, all the pictures or videos shown on this blog are not mine.  I do not own any of the lovely photos or images posted unless otherwise stated.


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