Early learning is a very extensive and decisive sort of learning method for children. It starts from the first gentle strike of a mother’s hand on her pregnant belly until the early school years. The beginning is visual stimulation through simple contrast (black and white) shapes. Later use full colour and more detailed patterns. Of course, talking to a baby, explaining the images, scenery, and surroundings. Then toddlers introduce to, rather, natural materials to study and experiment with. Generally, children’s energy and curiosity drive them to explore their world. They learn through all their senses and movement. Observing, touching and investigating is their way of acquiring knowledge and experience.
“The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn.”
Why is early learning important?
Many researchers studied the benefits of early learning, especially from infancy onwards. Those studies proved various benefits for children. Such as positive outcomes on mental, emotional, physical and social health development, as well as educational and academic progress. Methods and materials may vary, but the results are always a great beginning for a healthy future. So the importance of early learning lies in the materials and the method.
Benefits of early learning
The considerable methods of learning bring countless benefits from childhood to adulthood.
After birth, babies have poor vision. Their vision is blurry, and they are unable to see more than 25 to 30 cm. The eye muscle is also not strong enough to control both eyes. Thankfully, by their first birthday, they have a mature vision almost like adults. They are born with billions of neurones, and they start to connect after birth. They connect to enable babies to develop and grow. Parents’ closeness and care help those cells connect. Parents and caregivers need to guide toddlers in a subtle way. Sitting with them and playing with them kind of set a guide or a rule book for them. This correct guidance through comfortable interaction helps put them on the right track. Especially after the past two years. Having come out of the isolation of Covid-19 and the distance from other children.
Early learning during infancy is from birth up till the first birthday. It starts with visual stimulation through flashcards. Talking and explaining images for the baby using simple words and simple sentences. This assists their eye muscle and aids better neurone connection. Also helps with hearing and speech development. Enjoying the profound moment when you cuddle with your baby is priceless. Your children will acquire a stable emotional balance and stability. We at sensolern call it, the mother’s lap school!
As soon as you notice your baby starts to reach out and try to grab things, introduce a toy that makes a sound. When they can hold things steady, and start to catch things with their fingers, introduce a toy with buttons on it. It is important for better hand and finger muscle control. Needless to say, it is key to future writing skills.
Cognitive abilities development does not stop here it thrives through until adulthood. Introducing useful learning material helps develop learning abilities, education and healthy physical progress.
While children play with various natural materials, they improve their personalities. Because they are using all their senses; vision, smell, touch and tasting. Playing with sand, coloured rice and other beans enhances self-awareness and abilities. This also helps them bind and sympathise with nature and its beauties. And creates early environmental awareness for the future education of science and experimentation. Early play with sensory toys gives them the feeling of control when they knead, mix or crush substances. It also gives them the chance to be self-aware of their physical abilities and emotions. Most importantly, children with autism and other relevant disabilities can calm down through sensory play and its various suitable materials.
One of the essential components of children’s development is social development. It is the direct contact with others, their attitude, their point of view and their actions. Direct interaction with others during playtime allows children to experience new emotions. Not only do they learn to control themselves but they develop a way of solving conflicts. Learning along the way how to compromise, and accept alternative solutions. As well as suggesting and accepting others’ opinions and points of view. Through this process, they build character and self-confidence. While playing in groups, they observe and try to blend in to impose their point of view. While they are out there they become more aware of their physical and mental strength.
Early learning during infancy enhances the sense of creativity in general. The first step you take is to use visual stimulation flashcards. From birth, children save data and make memories which shape their future character. This is why should you choose this method, chose something based on actual learning theory. Introduce toddlers to play dough, sand and things of the like. Dipping those little hands into materials helps them find their passion. Activities like finger colouring, painting and drawing enable them to control their hands. Those methods are what channel their ability to be creative. Next comes free play with others, and also the observations of people’s ideas and points of view. Toddlers may decide to imitate or innovate. Observation and collecting ideas from others help them process their own character. In both ways, they would be ready to present their own creation with confidence and a lot of their own ideas. A sensory table with various forms of rice, sand and sensory toys keeps children busy for a long time, and have fun and learn.
As human beings, we are a complex mixture of body, mind and emotions. Nevertheless, we learn every day from birth to the grave. So early learning shapes the future of every baby and draws the paths of their lives. As parents, let’s make those paths beautiful for them.