NCF-Foundational Stage-2022

What is Early Childhood Care and Education?

Early Childhood Care and Education

The first eight years of a child’s life are truly critical and lay the foundation for lifelong well-being, and overall growth and development across all dimensions – physical, cognitive, and socio-emotional.

Salient Feature of Foundational Stage

Indeed, the pace of brain development in these years is more rapid than at any other stage of a person’s life. Research from neuroscience informs us that over 85% of an individual’s brain development occurs by the age of 6, indicating the critical importance of appropriate care and stimulation in a child’s early years to promote sustained and healthy brain development and growth.

The most current research also demonstrates that children under the age of 8 tend not to follow linear, age-based educational trajectories. It is only at about the age of 8 that children begin to converge in their learning trajectories. Even after the age of 8, non-linearity and varied pace continue to be inherent characteristics of learning and development; however, up to the age of 8, the differences are so varied that it is effective to view the age of 8, on average, as a transition point from one stage of learning to another. In particular, it is only at about the age of 8 that children begin to adapt to more structured learning.

Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) is thus generally defined as the care and education of children from birth to eight years.

Resources:- National Curriculum Framework for Foundational Stage-2022