Kerryn Boogaard Kerryn Boogaard
Beverly Goldsmith Beverly Goldsmith
Zoe Bingley-Pullin Zoe Bingley-Pullin

The role early learning plays in children’s ongoing development:

By Lisa Miller Head of Junior School Strathcona Girls Grammar
By Expert Tips
Date: November 25 2020
Editor Rating:
475 x 315

Deciding whether or not to send your child to early learning is one of a parent’s most important considerations, especially at this time of the year.

If you’re still on the fence about it, that’s ok, many parents are. After all, it’s a very personal decision and one that doesn’t have a right or wrong answer.

In looking at the advantages of early learning, studies show that an early learning environment promotes a number of benefits which include the development of foundations for establishing a positive approach to learning and social skills for primary school and beyond.   

Why young brains stand to benefit most

The ages of two to seven are crucial for a child’s brain development. Children’s brains develop in spurts called critical periods. The first occurs around aged two, with a second one occurring during adolescence.

During this time the brain synapses double and as a result children are able to learn faster and absorb information than at any other stage in life. For example, research shows that children aged two to seven can quickly master a second language (as well as their native language), however once they turn eight, their language proficiency starts to decline.

In terms of social development, interactions with children outside of the family home helps to develop children’s communication skills, understanding of social cues, listening abilities, and how to view another person’s perspective — which are the key aspects to developing empathy.

Early learning is also understood to assist children in learning emotion regulation as they follow norms and instructions, while experiencing real feelings such as anticipation or frustration.   

Children who attend early learning centres (ELCs) that have good physical programs incorporated into their curriculum, can benefit from developing strength, muscle control, and motor skills earlier.

What does early learning look like?

There are many different styles of early learning programs, but young children are known to respond best to active learning. According to research, play is central to how children learn, make sense of their world, form friendships and test their intellectual, social, emotional, and physical environments.

Strathcona Girls Grammar School’s Early Learning program follows the Regio Emilia approach to education.  One of the key principals is The Hundred Languages. The Hundred Languages expresses the way children structure knowledge and organise their learning. The Hundred Languages are described as being expressive, communicative, symbolic, cognitive, ethical, metaphorical, logical, imaginative and relational. This principle is founded in play and emphasises the importance of providing children with one hundred ways to share their thinking with the world around them.

While the early learning experience will differ from one child to the next, the core philosophy remains the same in that children’s personal interests are drawn upon and acknowledged, and risk taking is encouraged and supported. The aim is to encourage children through play to understand that mistakes are a normal part of life which help us learn and grow.

How do I know if my child is ready for early learning?

Readiness for early learning is ultimately governed by age. In Australia, a child has to turn three before 30 April in the year of commencement. But on a personal level, it’s important to remember that every child is different and the right timing to send them to an ELC will depend on individual circumstances. The early learning environment is designed to help children build their own self-identity, explore and discover their interests, and uncover where they fit in their community for themselves, therefore they don’t need to have developed any of these skills to be ready for early learning.

Share This Tweet This Email To Friend
Recent Comments
0 Total Comments
Post a Comment
* your email address will not appear

Please enter the word you see in the image below:

Post a Comment
* your email address will not appear

Please enter the word you see in the image below:33343

Your Comment has been posted
Related Articles
It's good for your health
Read more
A Western Australian study shows that children move more &…
Read more
Cry babies

Dry your eyes!
The newest additions are on their way from the Babies who cry real tears!


Latest Tech Used In Shipping Containers
Read how the shipping industry has revolutionised

Motherpedia cover-2

Win 1 set of a 4-book hardcover illustrated boxed set
Barbara Murray’s new 4-book Sound Stories is perfect for parents and educators and could assist with NAPLAN results

Motherpedia cover (4)

Where to celebrate Oktoberfest Australia
Get ready for this celebration!

Motherpedia cover-4

A Fortnight of Foodie Experiences at East Village
A taste of East Village. What's in it for me?

Globber my too fix up cover

We Try: Globber My TOO Fix Up
A scooter that grows with your child

Throw a winning cricket pitch

3 Steps to a Winning Backyard Cricket Pitch
Ex-Adelaide Oval legend curator Les Burdett shares his tips for getting your backyard cricket pitch test match ready this summer

A bike that follows your kids life cycle - motherpedia - cover

A Bike That Follows Your Kids Life Cycle
Check out the Bunzi 2-in-1 gradual balance bike!

Moonlight lifestyle

Moonlight Cinema to bring…
Moonlight Cinema announces brand new Western Sydney venue

Screen shot 2019-11-26 at 8.29.12 am

Your Magical Christmas Wonderland…
Adventure park is about to light up the night sky with its "Christmas Festival of Lights"

Screen shot 2019-11-21 at 11.11.36 am

The Preston Market Gets…
It's time to feel pumped up for the holiday season!


Bunnings team members get…
Help raise funds by buying a snag or donating at your local store.