Today’s Play . . . Tomorrow’s Success!
Quality early childhood programs offer young children learning experiences through play to develop many skills that are necessary for children to learn to read and write for success in math and science. Play also develops behaviors that help children master all school subjects not to mention how to make friends and get along with others. This doesn’t mean that preschoolers are ready to be taught to read and write. It means that they are learning many of the things that will lead to success in elementary school by spending their time playing in high quality child care programs today. For example, let’s think about some of the activities typically offered in child care programs. When children mix two colors of paint to make another color, they are developing an understanding of cause and effect. When children build with blocks, they are learning to judge distance, space and size. When children string beads, they are improving their ability to use their eyes and hands together which is needed for learning to write. When children play restaurant or grocery store together, they are learning how to work together to solve problems and improving their language skills. When children play in wet and dry sand, they observe first-hand the changes that water makes to sand, learning that combining things together can create different things just like many science experiments and cooking projects. When children receive quality early childhood education and care, everyone benefits: children, families, schools and communities. The next time you see a child at play, consider the life-long skills this child is developing so early in life!