The Early Child Hood Care and Education

Usha Iyer, Director, The Bangalore School The Bangalore School strives to be the best among the schools in the country by ensuring qualitative improvement in the child's attitude

Are we imparting quality education and ensuring safety for our kids?
The Early childhood centre on Quality Teaching and Learning uses four integral elements of quality teaching and learning: engaging every day interactions with children(the foundation); choosing and implementing a strong curriculum; using regular assessment of children's skills, and individualized teaching. These elements when connected with one another form a single structure that fosters children's learning and development.

Research-Based Curricula and Teaching Practices
A high-quality, research-based curriculum provides learning goals and activities in key areas of children's development that reflect support for school readiness goals.

Ongoing Child Assessment
Ongoing assessment is integral to curriculum and instruction. Our goal is to help children achieve school readiness and individual learning goals. We need to keep track of the children's progress and use assessment to guide our teaching.

Highly Individualized Teaching and Learning
Effective instruction for all children requires individualized teaching and learning opportunities to access, participate, and thrive in the preschool classroom.

Learning environments are nurturing spaces that support the learning of very young children. Early childhood programs create a safe, fun, and welcoming environment for infants and toddlers. This includes play spaces, areas for care giving routines, and outdoor areas. Staff plan ways to integrate home cultures into the environment. They also consider the ways the space can change to support the changing ages, interests, and characteristics of a group of children over time.

The Early childhood education insists on these fundamental elements of quality preschool practice. These include social and emotional support, well organized and managed classrooms, and meaningful teacher child interactions that support children's engagement in learning.

Constant Audit Checks is Essential
Preschool children make the transition into kindergarten more successfully when their schools and parents prepare for it together,
and when their preschool and kinder garten teachers connect. Also, by coordinating transition efforts, preschool and elementary programs can help children maintain and maximize the gains they made in preschool.

What do parents look for in a child care/education centre?
When choosing a preschool for the children, parents might consider a number of different factors, including cost, location, curriculum, hours of operation and environment. A preschool environment should be safe, above all things, and ensuring safety in a preschool setting encompasses a number of considerations.

"A high-quality, research-based curriculum provides learning goals and activities in key areas of children's development"

A Few Safety Tips Apart from the Danger of Sexual Abuse
*Hire ample, qualified staff members. You should have enough employees to supervise all of the children in your preschool, and to ensure that all of the areas in the preschool where children congregate are monitored at all times by staff members.

Check the Play Area Regularly
• Employees need to have references checked on, and pass a background check.
• In the ECA there are legal ratios of staff to children, dependent on age.
Arrange the classroom in a way that allows you to see all of the children, at all times. Make sure there are no blind spots where children can get lost from your sight.
• If you use cubicles or partition walls, configure them in a way that allows you to see around them from as many angles as possible. For example, it is better to put a partition wall at a right angle to a perimeter wall than it is to put 2 partitions walls at right angles to each other in the center of the room.
• Set up play areas in the center of the room.

• Arrange chairs, desks and work tables in circles. Adhere to food safety guidelines. When it comes to preparing, storing and serving food, there are a number of precautions you should take to ensure daycare safety.
Safeguard the Outdoor Play Area.
• Ground covering must be soft to cushion falls.
• The height of swings, slides and other playground equipment must be a safe distance from the ground.
• There should be no bolts, nuts, screws or other fasteners protruding from the playground equipment in a way that could potentially harm children.
• Openings must be large enough to ensure that body parts cannot get trapped. A standard rule is to make sure there are no openings between 3.5 inches(8.4 cm) and 9 inches(21.6 cm) wide.
• Space play equipment at least 12 feet (3.7 m) apart.
• Clear traffic areas of tripping hazards. Examples of tripping hazards include tree branches, boulders, sudden shifts in elevation and tree stumps.
• Check playground equipment regularly for ease of operation and structural integrity.
• Elevated platforms should have guard rails.
• Encircle the playground with a tall safety fence, and make sure any gates leading to the outside are locked.

Keep chemicals locked away from children. In a preschool environment, cleaners, insecticides, first aid solutions, medications and all other toxic substances should be kept in a high, flame-resistant and safety locked cabinet.

Have emergency plans in place. Conduct fire and natural disaster drills on a regular basis to ensure that everyone at the preschool is familiar with the proper procedures for handling emergency situations.

It’s very important to note that all early childhood centres caters to a very tender age. If the school is safe, sensitive to the needs of the kids and renders an excellent curriculum and routine overall, all stakeholders (the child, teachers and parents) are happy and contributes to a safe, happy and healthy learning environment.