Getting to preschool or daycare is a big milestone for children. Research shows that 85-90% of brain development takes place for the first seven years of a child’s life, leaving a lasting impact on a child’s learning. Research also shows that a child’s development is directly correlated with the quality of a child’s experiences. Designing these experiences intentionally takes paramount importance at this stage of a child’s life.
Parents are the primary educators at this stage. However, a partnership with educators in the development of the child is critical. Time spent outside of the home is precious time that can build new life skills for kids. According to the NAEYC, preschool is the time where children continue to develop in many ways—physically, socially, emotionally, in language and literacy, and in thinking (cognitive) skills.
A child-centric approach to learning is important for three reasons:
- An average toddler forms around 700 neural connections every second between the ages of one to three. That means she is learning 700 new things every second. Every second!
- Based on the latest scientific research, children learn best when they are practicing and exploring materials rather than just sitting and listening to a teacher. So rote learning and content memorization will not help kids in the future.
- The purpose of learning in the foundation years is to develop mastery in crucial skills such as reading, logic, concentration, and perseverance.
At Mindseed preschools, a chain from the western part of India with preschools in Mumbai and Pune, they have championed skill-based and personalized learning in early-age education. Their focus on skill-based curriculum is rooted in science.
Here are 3 reasons for the skill-based curriculum they promote:
A skill-based curriculum promotes greater independence
Students who learn through skills-based instruction are more likely to think at a higher level and solve problems on their own. This is important, particularly for primary school children who are being introduced to new ideas and concepts every day. Children at this age are just beginning to make connections between what they have been told and what they have experienced.
A skill-based curriculum is designed to increase learning speed
Students learn much faster when there are multiple ways for them to absorb information. Using a skill-based approach can further develop what they already know and help them grasp concepts, quicker.
A skill-based curriculum focuses on providing real-world experience
Children have little real-world experience, which makes teaching theoretical subjects more challenging. By creating lessons that engage their reality, that they can experience and build upon, they will be able to catch on a lot faster.
Mindseed focuses on 4 skill areas that encompass the child’s complete development through their skill-based curriculum. In each of these skills, a learning path (called the Learning Arc) is designed for each child to help them to learn at their own pace. Each Learning Arc has more than 100 activities to help kids engage in hands-on learning.
- Physical Skills:
Fine motor skills: This involves the use of small muscles such as the hand, fingers, and thumb. Useful for tasks like writing, drawing and buttoning.
Gross motor skills: It involves the use of large muscles such as arms, legs, and other large body parts. Useful for tasks like running, jumping, kicking, throwing, etc.
- Math Skills: Math skills help a child to develop mastery in logic, shapes sorting, patterning, problem-solving and numeracy.
- Linguistic Skills: Helps a child to learn English as a language rather than a subject. Listening, speaking, reading and writing are the key constituents to mastering a language.
- Socio-emotional Skills: These skills help kids to get prepared for K-12 schools and life beyond. Independence, sharing, empathy, compassion, perseverance and confidence are some of the key traits that kids learn.
With a carefully designed skill-based curriculum, Mindseed presents all the elements for the perfect balance between learning, fun and lasting development for children.