Why moving toward more and more daycare at younger and younger ages is a wrongheaded direction for child development
By Libby Simon, MSW, RSW. Institute of Marriage and Family Canada
September 14 2011,
It is often said that education is the cornerstone of a civilized society. The foundation for learning begins long before formal schooling starts. But two questions arise: What do we mean by education and how should it be delivered? Certainly, no one argues that education begins at birth. The first tools children need to learn evolve within the family, our first school. The basis of that education lies in developing trust, love and empathy, which unfolds in our first relationships, not in academic skills. The best foundation for learning the three “Rs” (Reading, Writing and ‘Rithmetic) are what could be called the three “Ss” – Safety, Security and Stability. These are the underlying substructures of education. When these three basics are provided, many emotional, behavioural and academic concerns fall by the wayside, as well as the costs associated
with them. For this reason, early learning programs, today moving toward younger ages outside the home, will always fall short in providing a solid basis for lifelong learning.