How Education Affects Early Child Development

According to the Association for Supervision and Curriculum Development, about 75 percent of young children in the U.S. attend a preschool program before entering kindergarten 1. The ASCD also credits early childhood education programs with lasting effects on students, including increased likeliness to graduate high school, get a high-paying job and avoid crime. Preschool gives young children such a strong advantage due to a well-rounded curriculum focusing on various aspects of early childhood development.

Emotional Development

Preschool teachers focus on emotional development, laying the groundwork for a lifetime of positive communication techniques and healthy relationships. While clapping along to "If You're Happy and You Know It," or listening to the story of "The Grouchy Ladybug" by Eric Carle, young children experience the benefits of emotional development.

Physical Development

During preschool, young children engage in many activities which strengthen both their large and small motor skills. Fine motor control also aids in self-help activities including, fastening buttons and zippers, using utensils and brushing teeth. Preschoolers build up large muscles with outdoor activities, allowing them to practice skipping, hopping on one foot, throwing a ball and other skills appropriate for their age group.

Cognitive Development

Many preschool lesson plans involve the exploration of various themes, exposing young learners to learning units, such as:

  • space
  • farms
  • dinosaurs
  • transportation
  • many more

More importantly, they learn to use reason and problem solving skills. They also begin to sort and classify objects and put events in logical sequences. Through play in the preschool classroom, young children acquire skills that will contribute to future academic success.

Social Development

For many small children, preschool brings their first experience in peer interaction. Preschool classrooms also have dramatic play areas where young children can take on roles of teachers, parents and community helpers. By engaging in pretend play and emulating others, preschoolers practice socializing. Preschool gives young children constant exposure to peers, strengthening their social development.