What is Early Learning?

People confuse early learning with daycare or babysitting. Early learning is so much more than that. Early learning or early education- these are terms that are used to describe programs that provide education for children outside their own home before kindergarten. We know that children are actively learning wherever they are–at home, in early learning programs, and communities. Parents are undeniably children’s first and most important teachers, but young children need meaningful learning opportunities to develop skills, sense of self and a foundation for learning throughout life. Children who participate in early learning programs develop a love for learning, and families benefit too!

Children who attend high quality early learning programs develop competencies in:

  • Healthy eating and wellness habits
  • Fine and gross motor development
  • Self-help/self-regulation
  • Creative expression through the arts
  • Planning and reflection
  • Eagerness/curiosity for learning
  • Persistence
  • Social skills with peers and adults
  • Greater identity of who they are

They also gain other essential skills such as:

  • Listening and understanding
  • Increased vocabulary
  • Speaking in sentences/conversation
  • Emergent writing
  • Mathematical thinking, counting and measuring
  • Scientific thinking and inquiry
  • Understanding of people, places and environments
  • Early literacy
  • Problem solving

Interested in learning more about how to help your child grow and learn as well as get parent tips along the way, then check out the Office of Early Learning (OEL) “Parent Pages.”   Click here to view the latest month.