Developmental issues in preschoolers: Growing concern in Singapore

In Singapore, the number of developmental issues in preschoolers are rising alarmingly and the numbers are not good. Doctors are trying to create more awareness among parents and teachers to help fight this problem. It is one of the reasons why preschools are become increasingly important for children.

Increasing number of cases

The latest figures show that between 2010 and 2014, there has been a 76% increase in the number of children with developmental problems. The problems include speech recognition, delay in language learning and other developmental delays. Research has found that most of these issues are in kids between the ages of 4 and 6.

play-1Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and speech delays are the top conditions that are currently affecting preschoolers. ASD is a type of disorder that affects social interaction and communication. Children get detached from groups and find it hard to get accepted. The biggest reason for this could be the environment in which they live. Being separated from loved ones becomes a big challenge for such children.

Doctors have remained positive and say that timely detection and diagnosis can prevent developmental disorders in children. Diagnosis also helps children get back to their normal routine and prepares them for schools.

Global rise in cases

The World Health Organization (WHO) revealed that in Singapore about 1 in every 150 children suffer from ASD and in the world, about 1 in 160. The number of cases are rising and if treatment is not given on time it could easily affect 1 in every 10 children.

The main reason for such high rates is the environment. The place and people matter a lot for children and their brain development.

How preschools can help

Preschools provide a suitable environment for children where they can play and interact with children of their age. In preschools, apart from learning, children develop social and communication skills. Preschools make children aware of different people and situations. Playing and communicating with such people exposes them to a world that was previously unknown to them. It might take time for some kids to socialize but that’s not a problem. In time, they will understand the value of interaction.

The best treatment, or rather prevention, of learning and socializing disorders are preschools. Every child should be admitted in Singapore playgroups and it should become a priority for the government as well as the parents.

Merits of a Good Daycare centre

There are many parents who prefer to put their toddlers in a daycare centre since a good facility provides a well-structured ambiance. The daycare centres are monitored closely through checking their licenses to ensure they are following the prescribed rules. In many cases, their operation is closely supervised so that they can function in a hassle-free manner. Mothers belonging to the low-income groups are the ones who can benefit the most by sending their babies to a good daycare centre.
Here are some of the most important merits offered by good childcare centres in Singapore.
Mothers can be tension free

Many working moms do not quite like the idea of employing a nanny for their babies. If they do, they always try to find out how their babies are doing by calling up. Instead of getting stressed out about whether the nanny can manage the baby or not, many prefer to put their toddlers in a good daycare centre.
Clear rules are followed

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A good daycare centre usually has well-defined rules that the parents need to adhere to. These rules may include time to drop off the baby and the time for her pickup from the centre. There are rules laid down not only for the parents but also for the kids so that they lead a disciplined lifestyle within the premises of the centre. Since the time to drop off and pickup is usually fixed, parents can interact with others to discuss on how to take care of their toddlers properly.
Assurance of better care
The arrangement in a good daycare facility is much more organized and stable as compared to leaving your baby with a nanny or with your relatives. This is possible since a good daycare centre will agree to take care of your child irrespective of whether its teachers or staff are unwell or too tired to work.
Trained staff members
A good daycare centre usually hires trained staff members who are well conversed with early education curriculum. As a result, they have the necessary expertise to identify what can be expected from a child and accordingly nurture his skills and personality. In case you find that the daycare centre you are planning to select does not employ knowledgeable employees, it is better to hunt for a different centre. A good daycare centre will give a great mix of useful activities for your kids like storytelling sessions, dancing, painting and singing among others.
Toddlers will become more social
Your toddler will get an opportunity to interact with children of the same age group in a daycare centre and that can make them much more social than they were before. They will not get a similar chance to mingle if nannies look after them.

Five Tips To Get Your Child Learn Faster

It is not wise to be a pushy parent, especially if you notice that another child has learned something faster than your child. That being said, it is wise however, to impart knowledge to your child while encouraging him to retain that knowledge. At the best kindergarten in Singapore, kids are taught many subjects and are tested with their knowledge. Here are a couple of tips to help your child catch up with the rest of the class, if you notice him struggling.

Encourage and Engage

100227-N-0995C-010Encouragement works all the time and at every stage of life. If you notice that your child is attention deficit in a certain subject like addition in math, make it fun for the little one. Get him/her engaged in an exercise at home like baking a cake and add the ingredients so that s/he learns the basics of adding and subtracting.

Appreciate

A child who gets praise from her/his parents is ready to tackle the next clue. As you high five your child, you will see her/him get out of the gloomy state and speak his mind with animation and glee.

Add Fun to the Lesson

When you add fun to a boring subject like science or history for example, children automatically relate as the story unfolds. Using this basic method definitely ensures that your child’s learning will definitely improve faster than the speed of light.

Bring out their Talent

Whoever said that theatrics, math and music couldn’t go hand in hand? In using signs and games with funny voice-overs, encourages the little one, he will get learning ready. The idea is to bring out his talent while preparing him for school.

Failure is not a Bad Word

hr_dennisshives_2011_0012Let’s say the little one got a red mark on his report card, can you yell at him for doing so, or understand him? The latter is a better way to learn what could be the problem that he is experiencing. Sometimes a dose of reality and a kind word eggs kids on to achieve better results.

The best kindergarten in Singapore uses methods that are relatable by encouraging kids to learn and have fun at kindergarten. As they ready themselves for primary school, they get sure of themselves. They understand that education is imperative in the larger scheme of things, along with other aspects like extracurricular activities. The learning curve needs to blend well to be appreciated.

The Necessity Of Early Childhood Education

Finding a babysitter at the last moment can be a drag for parents. Ditto with keeping their child occupied while they attend to the daily chores or work at the office. The Singapore playgroup is the answer (for the playgroup experience) as kids engage in a greater learning curve for the future. Aside from this most imperative need, especially today, kids also have a great time in this safe environment. The early education that children get at the group caters to social interaction, creative talents, painting and drawing, recitation, nursery rhymes, some knowledge of numbers and the letters of the alphabet. In making the educative process interactive, kids automatically respond favourably.

There is a necessity in early childhood education because it paves the way for admission to a good quality school. It also opens doors to a learning experience unlike any other that a child may never have the opportunity for, at present or in the future. By learning the art of communicating in a language that is common to all in the class, children involuntarily respond positively. For instance, in a playgroup setting, when the teacher calls out the name of a single student and asks her to speak about her or his weekend, it gets the child talking. This continues with the next and the next and so on, and so forth. In doing this basic exercise, the kids in the class may even dialogue.

A Singapore playgroup is an ideal preschool to enrol your kids because they have their policies in place. In knowing the needs of kids, and by going the mile in getting them engaged in arts and craft, makes the educative journey a fun learning curve. Kids always respond to colours and a kind tone. Using this as a method, the educators at this fine play-school ensure that the time spent is well spent.

Children learn how to count, to read a little and even spell. In making the exercise interactive, children automatically answer questions. Aside from the indoor activities, kids also have fun outside. The school is well maintained and has a wide range of activities to keep the kids happy and grounded. While playing outside, kids have to take it in turns to use equipment, like the swing, for a short while so that every child gets a chance. Learning to share is one of the prime values that one can learn in life. Sometimes adults forget this, and many a time, children actually remind them of this basic nicety.

Importance Of Early Childhood Education

Neurologists suggest that first 5 years play a vital role in a child’s brain development. Many people argue over the fact that kindergarten or preschool education is unnecessary and mere waste of taxpayer’s money, as the knowledge imparted in these programs can be imparted by the parent’s themselves at home also. But researches have shown that children who joined preschool behaved better and adapted quickly to the environment at school than those who didn’t.

Critics’ point of view

Many critics of early childhood education argue over the differences in children who went to preschool and those who directly joined school. According to them preschool education could help the children in a shorter run, probably a couple of years but on a longer run there is no difference and even children who didn’t go to preschool are better sometimes than those who went to a preschool. To a major extent they are correct also, but with working parents you cannot completely rely on babysitters too. At this tender age children mold into the environment which they get whether it is positive or negative, so they can’t be left alone in the custody of a stranger throughout the day. In such cases preschool is a wiser and safer choice to make, because teachers are better custodians than babysitters, and they have the desired experience in handling children.

Research

In certain researches it has been found that children enrolled in preschools have developed a higher IQ than their peers. Other researches have also established the fact that children attending preschool developed a quicker learning habit than their peers. Likewise, some researchers have also established the fact that children who went to preschool got better grades, completed their education without any backlogs and ended up being responsible citizens without committing any crime during adolescence. Government has no significant role to play in making a decision on behalf of parents, the parents must be the ones deciding whether their child needs pre schooling or not and whether he will learn more with them at home, or without them in a classroom.

The differences in opinion of parents will always exist but any kind of learning whether it is at a school or home is always helpful and is necessary. Now it’s up to the parents to decide whether they can devote sufficient time to engage with their child in playful activities or not. If they can devote the time then there is nothing better than that but if they can’t they must start looking for a playschool, otherwise it will be very difficult both for the parents and the kid later when he joins school.

What Are The Common Child Care Assistance Options For Parents

These are unprecedented times in the lives of working parents who may need some help from external sources to take care of their children. Child care assistance is available even in terms of financial aid to help desperate parents to help their child get appropriate care. Singapore’s child care center helps parents to find various sources of assistance. The various services provided, the process of application and the eligibility required is as mentioned below.

Temporary Aid

Temporary financial or medical aid for child care can be provided under the light of various public schemes that are particularly meant for it. There are government sponsored subsidies on medical expenses and food coupons which can be applied by any family who is in need of it. Various social service, women and child welfare schemes also provide similar assistance on a temporary basis.

Temporary aid can also be found for day care facilities by utilizing various benefits provided for low income families. Parents will be invited to special counseling sessions which can help them determine the best way to give their child access to the best possible day care facilities which can provide assistance benefits.

Subsidies for Child or Infant Care

Subsidies are provided for parents who are employed or unemployed if they have enrolled their child to a infant care center which are licensed to provide assistance. Singapore’s child care center is one such licensed facility. These subsidies are covered by the Government which aim to make the child care programs more affordable. Parents cannot directly apply for these subsidies. Instead, the child care centers must submit the application to the government on their behalf. The parents should make sure that they follow the application procedure and meet the required eligibility criteria.

Subsidies for Student Care

Subsidies are provided to school-going children from low income families who attend child care facilities before and after school. The eligibility criteria is that the children must be aged between 7 and 14. The child and at least one immediate family member must be a permanent citizen of Singapore. The children should attend a MOE registered school. The combined monthly income of both the working parents must be below $3500. Otherwise, each family member must have an average income of $875. This subsidy can be applied at any child care center which has a valid registration.

Importance of Science Education in Early Childhood

There is a saying which goes “every child is a natural scientist.” Young children need to be exposed to the world of science at a young age when they are still wondering, discovering and exploring while playing. There is a common misconception that learning cannot be fun for children, but it is up to the adults to present science in the right way so kids take to it with enthusiasm. Amazing experiences with science can inspire children to want to learn and explore more on their own and motivate them to seek out a career in the field of science or engineering.

Early childhood educators have an enormous impact on shaping children’s thoughts and opinions. Many childhood educators are hesitant to introduce science in their classrooms because of their own unpleasant educational experiences, while others see science as a magic show. Child care centers in Singapore place focus on introducing science to young children via simple experiments and exposure to gadgets like a computer or an iPad, which allows them to adjust to the constantly evolving world of technology.

Parents’ role in education:

As parents, you should heighten your children’s curiosity by asking questions, making observations and explaining the “what and how” behind things. Also encourage them to ask questions. This helps your children create a desire to learn more and develops critical thinking skills. Real science starts with childhood curiosity and encouragement from parents and teachers can lead to discovery and exploration.

Value of science:

The understanding of the value of science in early education is rising as the number of children in child care facilities is increasing. As children spend more time in these facilities, they are more exposed to experience with objects, materials and phenomena such as playing with soap bubbles, raising a pet etc.

Reports state that science has been responsible for the natural and critical part of a child’s early learning and also serves as a catalyst to his curiosity about the natural world. Exposure to science and its teachings at an early age can enable children to use and develop other important skills, including working together, basic motor control, language and early mathematical understanding.

STEM (science, technology, engineering and mathematics) education is being incorporated in early schooling and child care centers in Singapore. Schools have begun programs that give students the opportunity to write code in a classroom setting, while several thousands of students have been trained in advanced computing concepts.