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Today, early childhood education is a topic of growing interest and a subject of much research and study. The pedagogical approach of Early Childhood Education, or ECE as it is commonly known, covers the approaches to educating children from birth to the age of six.
In a junior primary setting, which is the topic of my interest and study, I would like to put forth the key elements that constitute a high quality and effective program. Before I list these key elements, I would like to take the reader through the role and importance of early education and the various theories propounded by experts that have led to the formulation of the key elements.
Studies by researchers on human brain development have indicated that the highest number of neurons is formed from birth to six years of age (R.W. Williams and K. Herrup, Ann. Review Neuroscience, 11:423-453, 1988). This is the period when a child requires the maximum amount of nutrition, care and attention, which if not provided hampers the development of a child. Early childhood education and early childhood educators, including parents, thus play a pivotal role here by providing scope for emotional, social, cognitive, sensory, communication and physical development in a child. The approach for any early education system should be such that it helps a child not just to learn his subject but also to improve motor skills, develop emotionally and socially.
Much research has been done by varied experts on ECE and many theories to improve education and enhance the experience of learning have been proposed. ...
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