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The New Education Policy of 2020
A baby’s brain begins developing before birth and in the early years significant “wiring” occurs within the brain, effectively programming the child’s development, say neuroscientists. Hence ensuring early childhood care and education becomes imperative in the child’s life and growth.
This has been recently recognized by our National Government in India’s New “National Education policy 2020”. Changing from the 10+2 system, a new curricular and pedagogical structure 5+3+3+4 has come into focus. There are significant and important shifts from our earlier educational policies framed in 1968 and 1986. The NEP 2020 aims at making India, a global knowledge super power by giving highest priority in achieving literacy and numeracy foundation in children by class 3. In other words, its larger focus is on early years, ensuring moulding the child at the Foundational Level.
Today the emphasis is on reducing curriculum content and enhancing essential learning, critical thinking and more holistic and experiential, discussion based and analysis based, learning. More emphasis is on developing practical skills, out of the box ideas, creative thinking, problem solving, team work…etc.; rather than just getting academic scores. Introduction of the essential ECCE (Early Childhood Care and Education) as a part of NEP 2020 evidences the importance attached by the government on Pre-Primary Education.
At birth the average child’s brain is about quarter of the size of the average adult brain. It doubles in size in the first year, keeps growing to about 80% of the adult size by age 3 and 90% by age 5. And, during the first 5 years, a child’s brain is at its most absorbing, making this a critical period for learning and growth.
The NEP 2020 is very promising and futuristic and takes into consideration that the first 1000 days are very crucial for any new born. As ECCE consists of flexible, multi-faceted, multilevel, play based, activity-based and inquiry-based learning concepts which comprises of alphabets, languages, numbers, counting, colors, shapes, indoor and outdoor play, the child will relish it and grow. Puzzles, logical thinking, problem-solving, drawing, painting and other visual arts, craft, drama and puppetry, music and movement are also integral part of the concept. It also includes developing social skills, good behaviour, courtesy, ethics and a much-needed quality like sensitivity. Public cleanliness, teamwork and co-operation are also inbuilt in ECCE plans.
Development of your toddler into a good, efficient human being and citizen depends on your child’s interaction and play with you and your care givers. However, you also require a professional partnership with an organization like Vaekke EYFS, India’s pioneering EQ-centric Parent-child pre-school program, to mould him/her.