Many working parents feel guilty about leaving their children in nurseries, but there are many benefits and reasons why you don’t need to worry. There have been studies that have shown its likely to be better for their development compared to keeping them at home, as it helps them to develop valuable social and life skills.
The study, by researchers at the London School of Economics and Oxford University, found children are more stimulated at nursery due to the interaction with new children and adults, which helps their development.
Children benefit immensely from mixing with other children, learning through play and interaction, which means they are better prepared when it comes to starting school. They will also have greater social skills and be ready to take instructions from adults because they have developed confidence in relating to them already.
From 3-month-old babies up to starting school, children develop new skills much quicker by being at nursery, these include gross motor skills from crawling, walking & jumping, speech and a child’s fine motor skills are developed through singing children’s songs, painting and doing arts and crafts. The actions associated with songs and the hand skills needed for arts and crafts all have a positive impact on development.
Direct experience, through play, is also one of the most important ways of learning & developing for children. Emotional development is formed by building relationships, turn taking, listening, following instructions and children learn to be strong and independent.
Most children’s nurseries follow the Early Years Foundation Stage which focuses on the distinct needs of children from birth to 5 years of age. It is divided into 3 Prime Areas and 4 Specific areas. The prime areas are particularly crucial for igniting children’s curiosity and enthusiasm for learning, and for building their capacity to learn, form relationships and thrive. All children need to learn these key skills before they are three years old, in order that they have the tools they need for the future.
There are 4 specific areas that link to the National Curriculum in schools. These areas of learning help children to learn specific skills that relate to their education in the future these are Literacy, Mathematics, understanding the world & expressive arts & design.
The social skills we learn as children prepare us for adult life. Children must be provided with support and experiences which will help them to develop a positive sense of themselves and of others. The nursery provides this by ensuring there’s support for children’s emotional well-being to help them to know themselves and what they can do.
Social techniques learned during early play and nursery experiences for example: taking turns, sharing, forming friendships, playing well with others & problem-solving all form the foundation for later relationships with family members, friends and co-workers.
Those early social skills learned at nursery will be fine-tuned, expanded and honed but the basic building blocks begin to take shape while we are children. Interacting with other children and adults in a safe, structured and well-supervised setting at a children’s nursery, encourages kids to develop critical social skills more quickly.