Parent Involvement In Early Education

Parent involvement in the early childhood education. Today parents are more aware and involved than they’ve ever been with their children’s development. 

Preschool years are the most important years of a child’s development. Most important cognitive development happens during these preschool years. Parents can help their child to grow to  their full potential, by getting involved actively in the early childhood education process,

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Why is it very important that parent stay involved in their child’s Early Childhood Education?

Except for when it comes to preschool.

Many parents just stay involved in dropping their preschooler off to school in the morning while the teachers take over, and then pick them up at the end of the day. To get the true benefits from early childhood education, parents can include some practices at home.

The Benefits of Parent Involvement in Early Childhood education

Preschool years are the most important years of a child’s development. Most important cognitive development happens during these preschool years. Parents can help their child to grow to  their full potential, by getting involved actively in the early childhood education process,

  • Parent involvement helps extend teaching outside the classroom.
  • Their involvement creates a more positive experience for children.
  • Involvement helps children perform better when they are in school.

Involvement of parent is essential in learning what is happening in the preschool setup, as 

  • Parents support is essential in the learning that happens in preschool settings at home as well.
  •  Parents involved in happening of their child’s preschool classroom or child care facility can establish better connection between what is learned at school and what takes place in the home.
  •  This connection is a key component of a child’s development and supporting further learning.

How does it affect a child?

Not only does family or parental involvement help extend teaching outside the classroom; it creates a more positive experience for children and helps children perform better when they are in school.

Some parents who are in search of preschools for their child, do researches before selecting a school, these researches commonly involve questions like:

Hope you find answers for your query if you are also looking for a early education center or looking for shifting to a better choice.

RIGHT AGE

What is the Right Age to Send Your Kid to Play School or School?

Right age. Speaking of maturity, this component is a major one. School readiness exists if your answer to these clues is affirmative

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What is the Right Age to Send Your Kid to Play School or School?

Every mom thinks that her child should be the best one and learn everything at the proper age. So she started thinking to send her baby to play group or school.

Parents generally start to think of this once their child has crossed first year of his life or when they see some other young kids going to a play school. Generally this a conversation starter to moms who meet each other in the garden during evening strolls. Play School is quite a confusing term for people who know that it is also the name of a toy brand.

But right now the play school that we are referring to is a nursery school that children attend for just a few hours per day. As warranted by the age group, the educational component is not very rigid. Really, deciding whether and when to send your kid to play school is more contingent upon other factors, and here’s what you need to know. 

The School Requirements

The school likely has a certain age requirement for the playschool program, whether it be 18 months or two years. Generally, schools are pretty strict with their requirements, so your child will need to make the cut-off date. Let’s say only children who will be 2 years old by December 31 are permitted to join, and your child was born on December 29. When birthdays fall that late in the year, you usually have the option to wait an additional year. Whether or not to do so depends on the maturity of your child.

Maturity Level

Speaking of maturity, this component is a major one. Of course, no toddler is going to be super mature, but some can be mature for their age. If your child still desperately needs to be around you at all moments, it might be better to find a gentle separation program first. However, on the other hand, children who have a strong sense of independence often thrive from such programs. There are some clues that you can use to determine your child’s school readiness age. 

Educational and Recreational Needs

You must also consider where your child is in terms of educational and recreational development. For example, if he or she has never socialized with children of the same age, if he or she is the only child with both parents being working, if he or she is the only child at home then all such cases going to a play group is a very good idea. Children get to meet other children of the same age, starts to interact with them. It has been seen that this kind of setup also helps a child with a speech-delay.

The General Age

There is a general age slab for admission in pre primary age. Play schools generally allow children from age 18 months to 2 years as their youngest enrolls, where as many formal schools have lower Kindergarten as their entry level class. 

When you are considering sending your child to playschool, the first step is to find out if he or she even qualifies based on his or her age. If you’re still uncertain about this decision, call the school to see if they offer trial sessions or a program where you can stay with your toddler for the first few days.

Why is it very important that parent stay involved in their child’s Early Childhood Education?

RIGHT AGE. What is the school readiness age for your child ?

. It is easy for parents to answer this. School readiness exists if your answer to these clues is affirmative:

What is the school readiness age for your child? This might sound a bit tough at first please. But know that it is the term that makes it sound difficult to understand. It is easy for parents to answer this. School readiness exists if your answer to these clues is affirmative:

  • Is your child able to communicate verbally with adults and other children?
  • Is your child toilet trained to some extent?
  • Does your child have enough independence to be separated comfortably from parents for the length of the play school day?
  • *Does your child have a sense of confidence and an ability to begin to do tasks alone?
  • Does your child have a desire to explore and have new experiences outside the home?
  • Have your child developed the beginnings of an ability to relate to other children?
  • Does your child have the ability to deal with the physical demands of a new environment, such as climbing stairs?
  • Have your child developed the ability to stay focused on an activity or enjoy rhymes?
  • Does your child express a desire to go to school?
  • Is the child used to staying with people other than the mother like grand mother or maid?
  • How easily she catches a cold from other people? 
  • Is the child comfortable with other people except mom and dad for 1-2 hours?

Please note that the parent’s desire/ need to send a child to play school is different from the child’s readiness to go.

Sending a child to play school before she is ready to go could result in severe psychological damage to the child.. You can think of sending her for short durations if you feel she is not getting enough interactions with other children and you are not able to stimulate her enough because of your work schedule.

As your child grows you will have less and less control on his educational environment. In play school you do. Choose the play school keeping in view benefits to the child rather than future worries.

What to look for in a good play school?

Don’t go merely by the name tag or brand name of the play school in the belief that admission to regular schools will be easier thereafter.
Get reliable recommendations from parents whose children have studied in your shortlisted school.
  • Don’t go merely by the name tag or brand name of the play school in the belief that admission to regular schools will be easier thereafter.
  • Get reliable recommendations from parents whose children have studied in your shortlisted school. 
  • Talk to the children themselves and see whether they seem happy and interested.
  • Find out whether the curriculum of the play school concentrates on all round development (including social, emotional, intellectual and physical) or only on securing admission to a regular school?
  • Are the classrooms attractive for children?
  • *Are children exposed to activities that encourage self-expression and development of a full range of motor skills?
  • Are children exposed to books, reading, writing, counting, music, science and nature on a regular basis?
  • Is there a dedicated area for safe, vigorous physical activity and an adequate supply of equipment. Are children supervised?
  • What is the teaching environment like? Are children allowed to be creative or think for themselves?
  • What is the ratio of teachers to children?
  • Are individual temperament based differences recognized?
  • Do the teachers question individual children and encourage them to expand their thinking and problem- solving skills?
  • Does the staff pay attention to the needs of the child?
  • How far is the play school from your residence? 
  • If meals are provided are they nutritious and varied?
  • Do the teachers pay attention to the children during mealtimes – making sure they finish their tiffin?
  • How is the behavior of teachers with the students?
  • Is the principle experienced as a teacher and as an administrator?
  • Does the staff welcome you as a participant, communicate regularly with you and respect your preferences and ideas? 

What are the rules and regulations followed and the fee structure for admission?

Each school has their own admission procedure and fee structure. 

What is the procedure followed for joining in pre-primary school? 

Admission procedure varies from school to school. You need to contact the school for admission procedure. Collect the application from the school, fill up the same and submit along with necessary documents. 

 Where to get this information?

You can get the information about the fee, curriculum and all other things usually on the school’s website or by personally visiting their office.

What are the necessary documents that are needed during admission to a play school? 

The list of necessary documents totally depends on a particular school, still here is a list of things you should carry with you during the admission process. Keeping these things ready beforehand will save your time, energy and multiple visits to the school office. 

  • photographs of your child
  • Family photograph
  • Birth certificate from a civic body
  • Blood Group report
  • Aadhar card number
  • Photocopy of ID proof of parents/Guardian
  • Address proof

This is just a tentative list, schools might demand more or less documents than the ones listed here.

What is the right class for the child in school?

In India, if the entry level class is LKG (Lower Kindergarten or KG 1) then, the right age would be between 3 to 4 yrs. Most schools keep this as 3yrs and 6 months around june end or during the beginning of new session. As this will be the average age of the class.

Before this age a child can only go to a play school or a school with a dedicated class to cater the needs for this age group. In most of the schools, this dedicated class is named as Nursery.

Normally, any  play school has an entry level class as a Playgroup. There are many different names for this level. The right age for Playgroup would generally be more than 1years 6 months to 2 years.

What is the right age for a child for getting admission in a Play Group?

Decision about admitting your child to a play group broadly depends on many factors. It depends on the level of understanding that particular child has. While considering age, kids of age between 1.5 yrs to 2 yrs and above can be admitted to play group. This again depends upon the readiness of a child and the entry age for a given play school.  It is normally seen that even kids of age 1.5 yrs go to a play group and adjust themselves very well.

Going to Play School also gives a tremendous boost to a child’s vocabulary. Children with cases of speech-delays also improve a lot better when around other kids of the same age. They learn to sing rhymes and songs all day long. Their eating habit and independence also improves by eating in the classroom with other kids. And these are the benefits other than the academic portions. 

If a child is smart and mature than folks of his age, is it OK to skip the entry level class and admit him directly to Kindergarten or primary school?

What is the right age for a child for getting admission in Nursery?

The minimum age limit for a child for getting admission in Nursery is 2.5 years. 

What is the right age for a child for getting admission in Lower Kindergarten/ LKG/ KG-1?

Please note that there is no specific age limit criteria for joining/admission in LKG. The minimum required age for getting admission in 1st standard in any CBSE school is more than 5 yrs and 6 months around June. So minimum required age for a child for getting admission in LKG is minimum 3.5 years. 

What is the right age for a child for getting admission in Upper Kindergarten/ UKG/ KG-2?

The required age for getting admission in UKG is 4.5 yrs. 

What is the right age for a child for getting admission in Class 1 / Grade I?

The minimum age required for getting admission in 1st class is 5.6 years and so on. Meeting the age criteria is a must for getting admission in CBSE based schools.  

The age limit varies with state. So, it’s better to visit school to get details for admission and eligibility criteria.

Healthy Eating during Exams – Easy Tips

Healthy Eating during Exams!

Healthy Eating during Exams, with exams approaching, healthy snacking is the last thing a student thinks of. It’s easy to get into the habit of quick coffee and take-way pizza, because you don’t want to waste time on dining in detail. But, actually, good nutrition should be part of a students study plan because it’s going to help him ace those tests. 

Remember the rule:

The better the fuel your brain gets, the better you’ll study.

 Healthy Eating during Exams, with exams approaching, healthy snacking is the last thing a student thinks of. But, actually, good nutrition should be part of a students study plan because it’s going to help him ace those tests.
Healthy Eating during Exams, with exams approaching, healthy snacking is the last thing a student thinks of. But, actually, good nutrition should be part of a students study plan because it’s going to help him ace those tests. Photo by Giftpundits.com from Pexels

Whether you are a student or mother of a student preparing for his exams, these tips will help you build healthy eating habits during exams. 

Here are 10 tips for eating right during exams:

  1. Meeting daily vitamin and mineral requirements will make doing your best much easier. Iron and Vitamin B are especially important to maintaining the physical and mental energy necessary to study well. Iron-containing foods : red meat, cereals and spinach. Some foods that contain B vitamins are: whole-grains, wheat germ, eggs and nuts. Some other foods that provide nutrients to the brain are Fish and soy. 
  2. Food is always a better choice than Dietary supplements. So try to replace Vitamin C tablet with an orange. An orange contains not only Vitamin C, but also fiber, beta carotene and other minerals. Fruit ranks high among the best foods you can eat for your brain. The natural sugars in fruit offer clean energy, so you don’t experience the crash that follows consumption of refined sugar. Blueberries (which can be bought frozen in bags) get a lot of attention because they contain powerful antioxidants and other nutrients.  When you’re heading for the library or to your room, pack whole-food items like apples, bananas, carrot sticks or a handful of dry fruits.
  3. Eating regular meals helps keep nutrients and energy levels more stable. It reduces the temptation of empty-calorie snacks in the vending machine. Eat at regular intervals.
  4. Consider taking 5 or 6 well-balanced, smaller meals. Big meal stays in your stomach. Eating the standard three-big-meals-a-day slows you down mentally and physically. A sandwich or some fruits could do the magic. Fresh fruits, fruit smoothies, dry fruits, honey-coated nuts, soups, interesting salads etc are good options.
  5. Meet for breakfasts. Meet your study buddies during morning hours. If you feel like having a snack break, breakfast is a good time. Oats, Muesli, Upma, Khichdi, Idli etc are great options with a low glycemic index which provide a constant and steady supply of glucose.
  6. Hydration is the main thing to care for. When you sit in the comfort of your room and probably with your AC on, you do not feel thirsty and hence end up drinking less fluids. When dehydrated, the body and mind are dazed, restless. It is hard to concentrate on studies. Choose your beverages well. Reduce caffeine, sugar intake. Since too much caffeine can make you jittery, try to drink moderate amounts: 400 to 450 mg per day, the equivalent of 2/2.5 cups, (16 to 20 ounces or 500 to 625 ml). Better choices include water, fruit juice, milk, antioxidant rich green tea, milkshakes, fresh soups, lemonade, lassi and coconut water. Avoid aerated beverages. Have at least 8-10 glasses of water per day.
  7. Choose power packed vegetables. Not all vegetables are created equal. Use the hint – the darker the color, the higher the concentration of nutrients. Spinach has more nutrients for mind and body than lettuce. 
  8. Snack smartly while studying and you may find that you retain more. Try to get two food groups into your snacks to balance the nutrients and keep your blood-sugar level stable. Eat healthy snacks in between meals like protein bars, fresh fruits, peanuts, makhana and roasted chana etc. specially when you are studying till late at night.
  9.  It’s easy to feed the brain well. Gather simple recipes for nourishing foods. Brain boosting foods include foods that improve memory and concentration like almond walnuts, fish, flax seeds, banana, chickpeas, spinach, broccoli, etc.
  10. Avoid junk food. Foods like chocolate, cookies etc can cause a sudden spike in sugar levels in the blood. After a while, when the stomach feels empty it could lead to craving for more such junk food.

Healthy Eating during Exams!

Thank you for staying till the 10th tip. Extra 6 important suggestions for you to make your exam time less stressful.

  1. Feed yourself with good eight hours of sleep. Sleep is important. Good sleep is as good for your brain as food for the body. Lesser sleep can interfere with learning ability, causes mood swings and compromise your immune system.
  2. Keep yourself away from electronic devices.Take out an hour everyday for some recreational activity to keep yourself happy and motivated.
  3. Make sure you get your stress-buster foods. During stressful times like exams, the body’s requirement for certain water-soluble vitamins like Vitamin B complex and C, minerals like zinc goes up. These help in the synthesis and functioning of adrenal hormones that are basically our stress-fighting hormones. Brown rice, nuts, eggs, fresh veggies and fruits can help.
  4. Give yourself foods to increase efficiency of the brain: Antioxidants like Vitamins A, C and E reduce damage to brain cells due to increased stress by fighting the free radicals. Eggs, fish, carrots, pumpkins, green leafy veggies, fresh fruits  can help meet this requirement. They also help increase the body’s immunity and help reduce chances of the child falling sick during exams.
  5. Don’t miss out on memory enhancer foods. Omega 3 fatty acids found mainly in fish are required to enhance brain function and memory. It is recommended that you have at least two servings of Salmon (rawas fish), herring (bhing) or mackerel (bangda) per week. For restricting calories, they are best eaten grilled, shallow fried with very little oil or baked. If you do not eat fish or do not have access to good fish, add ground flax seeds (alsi), pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds (til), soya bean oil, canola oil to your diet. Omega 3 fatty acid supplements are also available.
  6. Avoid eating outside food during exams. Exams being times for high-stress and low-immunity, children are highly prone for infections. So, avoid eating outside food as much as possible. 

Healthy Eating during Exams!

Examples of some healthy options for healthy eating during Exams and preparations for competitive exams.

BreakfastOats, Muesli, Upma, Khichdi, Idlis,eggs, poha, idlis, dosa, dhokla
Smaller mealsred meat, cereals and spinach, whole-grains, wheat germ, eggs and nuts, Fish and soy, Brown rice, nuts, eggs, fresh veggies and fruits, carrots, pumpkins, ground flax seeds (alsi), pumpkin seeds, sesame seeds (til), soya bean oil, canola oil, milk and milk products, sprouts, tofu, chicken, healthy nuts in combination with healthy cereals like dalia, oats, quinoa, and whole wheat products.
Snacksapples, bananas, carrot sticks or a handful of dry fruits, Fresh fruits, fruit smoothies, dry fruits, honey-coated nuts, soups, interesting salads,protein bars, fresh fruits, peanuts, makhana and roasted chana, milk and milk products, sprouts, tofu, eggs, chicken, fish, healthy nuts in combination with healthy cereals like dalia, oats, quinoa, and whole wheat products.
For hydrationwater, fruit juice, milk, antioxidant rich green tea, milkshakes, fresh soups, lemonade, lassi and coconut water. 
Food that you can avoidchocolate, cookies, aerated drinks, fast food, heavy and oily meals
Examples of some healthy options for healthy eating during Exams and preparations.

Eating healthy, adequate rest and proper sleep are the key for fresh and healthy mind which makes retaining the knowledge easier.

All the best. We all are born with wings.

Also read 8 ways to discipline without spanking

9 tips for spending quality time with your child

What should be the parent’s role in a child’s life?