These words were written by Vicki Palmer, educator and founder of TicTacTeach.com, in discussing the key benefits of early childhood education. In this particular blog she goes on to say that study after study has proven ECE has a tremendous impact on life outcomes.
That certainly comes as no surprise to me. In my decades as mother and now grandmother I have seen first hand what education can mean to a child during their formative years. Trained early childhood educators unquestionably enrich the lives of little ones through learning.
I have just returned back to work from a not especially restful, but very entertaining vacation. With my daughter and her husband taking a little mini-break, I was called in to enjoy the company of my grandchildren, a four-year-old girl and her two-year-old brother.
When the plan was first put into place, it admittedly raised some mixed feelings. That these two darlings own a good portion of my heart, that spending time with them is one of my favourite things to do are indisputable facts. However, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little apprehensive about four full days with the dynamic duo. While I try to maintain a certain level of fitness, I know I'm no match for the boundless energy of a toddler and preschooler.
Any concerns were assuaged, though, when my girl told me there would be respite. Since she operates a home daycare she had hired another registered ECE to tend to her charges for two days during the week. This meant a bit of down time for Grandma as Little Missy and Mister would be eager to be downstairs with their friends.
And with the exception of a few minutes here and there when they popped their adorable faces in to check up on me, this was most definitely the case. For most of Thursday and Friday I had plenty of time to recharge. I went on a little shopping adventure, lazed on the front porch with a book and took a walk in the countryside.
What I also had the opportunity to do, was listen to the interaction and activity taking place in the daycare. Through creative play, imaginative projects, music, song and exercise a room full of youngsters were, like sponges, absorbing experiences, words and behaviours. They were encouraged to try, to explore, to move. They were directed in social practises, in teamwork and manners.
A qualified ECE is far more than a babysitter. They are as important to a child's education as any elementary or secondary school teacher, if not more. So, to celebrate these nurturers of young mind here are some terrific photos:
iPHOTOS.com Daycare Photos