Thank you for stopping by our blog. If this is your first time visiting I hope you enjoy our personal views for the early years. Our topics and ideas are based on years of home childcare experience mixed with a balance of theory and new ideas from around the world.
Today we're discussing how we as educators and parents can support children on their social development journey. We all know children who are born extroverts. They exude confidence and appear comfortable in any situation. In direct opposition, the introverted children in our lives do not appear confident in social situations. Often they pull away from peers and play independently.
Home childcare programs. early-years classrooms, playdates at the park, and even individual home environments will have a mix of multiple personalities. Each child is an individual, and their individuality is to be respected. We are not "fixing" their deficits; instead, we are encouraging respectful and appropriate inclusiveness.
I love a good child development theory. To start our discussion on supporting social development, it's only fair we go straight to Eric Erikson. Let's have a look at Erikson's first three stages.
The common theme between the three stages is Relationships. Before children can build positive and reciprocal peer relationships, they need to build strong relationships with the core adults whom they interact with daily. These include but are not limited to parents, guardians, core educators, and caregivers. The importance of early relationships is a big reason why I love Home Child Care as much as I do. Home Daycare by it's very formation is one educator who cares for the child from infancy to school age. Whereas in a daycare centre the child is transitioned to a new room, new educator, possibly a whole new group of peers as they enter each new age group. There are a few daycares who follow the Reggio Emilia approach and keep the same educator with the same group of children as they grow from infancy to school age. Again the core value that early relationships are crucial to life long success is paramount.
So how does this knowledge guide us to support children's social development?
Another practical step we can take to support social development is to intentionally plan activities and "invitations to play" that promote social interaction.
Learning in the early years is fundamentally a social experience. As children learn about themselves and others, they strengthen their emotional intelligence, their ability to construct plans, and attend to what's important. They do all this based on the values and practices their core adults provide through daily activities. Thoughtfully planned "curriculum" supports children to develop these skills through potential social interactions with their peers and adults.
These "5 Great Curriculum Starters" listed are just that, STARTERS. When planning daily activities, reflective practices are paramount. The use of different centres and manipulative's within a childcare environment are what create opportunities for meaningful play. Not listed in the infographic are imaginative play centers. These include dress-up, kitchens, tool benches, cleaning supplies, animal care kits, and more.
ELECT (Early Learning For Every Child Today) is a valuable resource used by early childhood educators and childcare providers. This document outlines developmental domains and lists indicators of skills for each age group. As a next step, I encourage you to review social and emotional development for each age group. Linking "indicators of skills" to your specific curriculum can support how you view the children in your care. Hopefully, by observing and reflecting on "what's developmentally normal," you are better able to scaffold the children's learning.
Clinton J., (n.d). The power of positive adult child relationships: connection is the key. Retrieved from: http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/childcare/clinton.pdf
Joseph, G. & Strain, P. S. (2004). Building positive relationships with young children.Young Exceptional Children, 7(4), 21-29.
Ontario Ministry of Education (2007). Early Learning for Every Child Today: A Framework for Ontario’s Early Childhood Settings. Retrieved from http://www.edu.gov.on.ca/childcare/ oelf/continuum/continuum.pdf
Ostrosky, M. M. & Jung, E. Y. (2010). What Works Briefs: Building Positive Teacher-Child Relationships. Center on the Social and Emotional Foundations for Early Learning. Retrieved from http://csefel.vanderbilt.edu/briefs/wwb12.pdf
13/2/2020 12:26:08 am
This is really a wonderful stuff to read, your article is very informative & interesting. Surely, this'll help a lot to all. Thanks for posting, keep blogging!
Kristina @ Little Lambs
13/2/2020 11:06:47 am
thank you for your comment!
5/1/2021 01:46:46 am
I do love that this post mentioned that it is important for us to choose day care programs that knows how to enhance children's social development. My wife and I are planning to send our children to a day care program. I will definitely keep this tip in mind when we go on pre school tour.
Kristina @Little Lambs
5/1/2021 06:24:54 am
thank you for your comment. When looking for a preschool/child care program it's important to arm yourself with as many questions as possible. Buildings/homes can "look" amazing. It's the people that matter though. :)
24/4/2021 03:29:39 pm
Wonderful information, thanks a lot for sharing kind of content with us. Your blog gives the best and the most interesting information on educators role in social development . I wonder if we can gather such practical information about it, a great post definitely to come across.
22/1/2022 11:25:57 am
Thank you for your comment!
19/8/2021 11:43:27 pm
I liked it when you shared that it is great to find a childcare environment that provides meaningful activities for your kids. My friend just mentioned the other day that she is planning to send his son to reliable child care since she wants him to start socializing with other kids. I will suggest to her looking for one that provides meaningful activities for her son.
Thanks for pointing out that daycare centers will help a child transition to new rooms with new educators. I hope that I can find a good facility for my son. It's to prepare him early before going to a proper school because I worry about him having separation anxiety.
22/1/2022 11:26:36 am
Thank you for taking the time to comment.
19/10/2021 08:50:57 pm
I like how you mentioned that before children can build positive and peer relationships, they need to build strong relationships with the core adults with whom they interact daily. My cousin mentioned to me last night that my nephew loves talking about going to school and she is hoping to find a daycare that will be good for my nephew. Thanks to this informative article and I'll be sure to tell my cousin that there is a trusted daycare center in town and she can consult as they can answer all her inquiries and will provide good-quality education for him.
1/12/2021 11:40:26 am
This post made an interesting point that when looking for a daycare centre for our kids, it is best that we consider the development plan. I do agree that it is important for the center to have a plan in motion as it indicates that they are skilled, experienced and qualified. Since I am planning to send my kids to daycare, I will definitely ask about their syllabus and program.
22/1/2022 11:27:49 am
Thank you for your comment. COVID, has definitely pulled me away from writing blog posts, but it's a goal to get back into creating this content in 2022!
30/1/2022 10:32:39 pm
I appreciated it when you shared that it is a fundamentally social experience for kids to learn in a daycare center. My friend just mentioned the other day that she is planning to find a place where her son can learn to socialize with other kids. I will suggest to her find a reliable daycare center where he can mingle with other kids around his age.
1/2/2022 10:01:17 pm
I found it interesting when you said that asking questions is important for your child to be comfortable. My cousin mentioned to me last night she is planning to enroll my nephew in daycare and asked if I have any idea where is the best option to consider. Thanks to this informative article and I'll be sure to tell her that it will be much better if she consults a trusted daycare as they can answer all her inquiries and will provide good-quality education and memories for my nephew.
15/2/2022 10:46:37 pm
I've been thinking to enroll my son in a child care center. Your post gave me a lot of reasons why I should push for it. It captivated me the most when you mentioned that early education gives children a social experience at it allows them to discover things about themselves and others.
7/3/2022 07:44:24 pm
I like that you said that it is important to engage with your child for them to be happy with what they are doing. My best friend informed me that she plans to enroll my nephew in an early childhood education program and asked if I had any recommendations for the best option to check if it is suitable for my nephew. I'll be sure to tell her, thanks to your helpful article, that it's much better if she contacts a reputable daycare center, as they can help her figure out what's best for my nephew.
25/4/2022 09:47:15 pm
It sounds like you need to introduce your kids to proper curriculum or they won't hit their milestones. I need to get my kids into a good pre-school. I'll have to consider looking at schools within my local area.
23/5/2022 04:26:40 am
It's interesting to know that children would usually imitate our actions. In that case, I should look for a child care center that I can trust to ensure that I get the best outcome for my son when he grows older. Also, I want to know more about the center that I can find as well because it should be consistent with my beliefs and principles regarding raising a child.
3/11/2022 02:02:54 am
It is important for educators to provide children with opportunities to socialize with their peers. This can be done through group activities, such as playing games or singing songs together. It is also important for educators to model positive social behaviors, such as sharing and taking turns. By doing so, children can learn how to interact with others in a positive way.
5/5/2023 02:04:39 am
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Early Years at Home
When we refer to home we refer to a feeling of welcome, family, comfort and belonging. Licensed home child care offers the feeling of "home" with the benefits of early years pedagogy.
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