The Importance Of Early Years Development

You may ask yourself what the importance of early years development is, and I would say, from over 16 years of experience watching how children develop in a nursery environment, that it is crucial to provide children with all the needs for them to flourish and thrive in adult life. A child’s brain is at its most receptive during the period from 0 to 5 years, and it is also important to our child’s development, social skills, and health.

We have seen this in the differences between a child starting in our setting from the baby room and when children start as toddlers at 2 years of age. The children who joined us from an early age, by the age of two, have built up fantastic communication and language skills and confidence around peers.

Practitioners at Angels by day are responsible for tracking the development of each individual child as they progress throughout the nursery we use the EYFS from 0-5 years which supports us to understand the needs of each child, and to spot any areas a child may need additional support. Practitioners use this information to plan activities for each child based on what the children already know. We thrive on all staff having a good relationship with all children and their initial needs being met, allowing the children to be exposed to a learning environment and, of course, children learning through play and engagement.

We provide families with settling-in sessions, during which we use this time to build relationships with the child and their families and learn about a child’s early development. We also understand that children will always feel comfortable in their home environment with family members, so we have encouraged parents to share developmental milestones with us by completing home observations. It is a great way for the setting to work in partnership, sharing children’s progress with them.

Stages of early years development

Toddler Room at Angels by Day Nursery

Infancy (0-12 months)

Communication and language are key in a child’s early development. They provide children with rich language, stories, and rhymes. Playing alongside your child, echoing their sounds and movements, allows them to grasp the first indicators of how we communicate with peers. Children need to feel safe and secure in their environment, and all their immediate needs need to be met first.

At Angels By Day, we work closely with parents to establish routines and comforts children have from home, helping them feel secure. We provide the children with lots of activities throughout their day, ensuring we have role play accessible to the children, allowing the children a space to be imaginative and explore new tools and equipment to support the children pulling to stand, walking around furniture, building balance and confidence and helping their physical development grow. We have calm, soothing places for the babies in our care to settle when having a bottle or a little sleep. All this allows your child to develop with the amazing spaces we provide, and your child/ren learns every day through play.

Learn and Play room at Angels By Day
Early Years Development at Angels By Day

Children ages 0-12 months are learning to focus their vision, balance and reach out to explore textures. Parents could talk, smile, and sing at home to support their child’s early development and continue conversation times with their baby to promote this development. Engage with your child as much as possible; their brains are soaking in all of this information.

Toddlerhood 1-3 years

By now, your baby is usually becoming more aware of their surroundings, communicating with others, babbling, using single words, and even forming small sentences of up to 4-6 words and is building relationships with people around them. Children attending a nursery setting may be coming home talking about the friends they have been playing with today and naming staff members they have been around, which is a clear indicator of what they are learning and how they are developing.

Early Years Development toddlers
Early Childhood Development - Socialising

Children at this age are starting to show real interest in the activities and toys around them and may start to have favourites and display these interests. They are learning to turn, take, and join in with peers, building their personal, social and emotional development. Children are becoming much more mobile and will start to explore the spaces, climbing, squeezing into spaces and enjoying the outdoor space.

Physical development is one of the prime areas of development, and at Angels by Day, we thrive on providing children with time to explore outdoor spaces in all weather. The children have lots of space to explore different areas, building their development. There are lots of local outdoor spaces for exploring the rivers, visiting the park, or even foraging in the woods.

Early Years Development outdoor play
Early Years Development -

Preschool 3-5

Children are now growing in independence, thinking of new ideas, having close friendship groups, and progressing in learning new things and retaining that information. They can follow instructions and express their needs and wants. They have grown their social skills and curiosity and are keen to explore the surroundings around them.

By now, the child’s communication has developed and is much more advanced. They talk in sentences, are imaginative, are more understanding of their feelings and those of others, and are starting to understand and follow boundaries. In our preschool space, we provide the children with 1 1 phonics session, getting them ready for the school environment and helping them blend sound in preparation for reading, giving them that extra boost for when they start school.

Early Years Development Stages (2)
Early Years Development Stages (3)

The children are always provided areas where they can showcase their creative flare, allowing their literacy skills to flourish. We provide the older children with writing activities such as name stones and pencil control sheets and work on our phonics sounds and how we write them. Younger children love to explore different mark-making tools, exploring paint with their hands; the children learn to grasp using full hand grasp and then onto the tri pop grasp as their fine motor skills grow. Also, teaching the children self-help skills, washing and drying their hands after creative activities, learning a new language, and talking about different textures.

Children benefit from attending an early years setting in many ways, which provides them with opportunities to develop and learn, grasp routines, and learn boundaries. Early education is the foundation of a child’s future development. It builds young children’s physical development, social skills, cognitive development and emotional health.

Early Years Development Stages (1)

“It’s a beautiful recipe book of wonderful ingredients, carefully mixed together with experience, passion and a love of Early Childhood.”

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