October 03, 2012 // Franchising.com // New research shows that early childhood education not only helps children on an academic level, but on a social level as well. As students go back to school, children who are not prepared for elementary school may face challenges throughout their education. Quality educational child care programs like Children of America Educational Childcare & Academy (COA) make social and academic readiness a key focus in preparing children for school.
"During the early years of a child's life their brains are like sponges, quickly picking up on language and other fundamental skills," said Thad Pryor, CEO and founder of Children of America. "During that time they are also building crucial social and emotional skills. These early years of learning have a major impact on their future development."
A National Household Education Survey that looked at children up to 5 years old found that having a quality early childhood education helped build social skills, emotional competence and the communication skills needed for school. Early learning also helped lay a foundation for building positive teacher-child relationships throughout school.
At Children of America, the toddler through pre-kindergarten programs are built around a fully engaged learning process where children see, feel and touch the concepts to help them connect the ideas in their minds.
For example, the Tray Tasking system uses learning materials and trays to help children build an understanding of top-to-bottom and left-to-right directions, while developing organizational, logical and critical-thinking skills. The system effectively leads children to building reading, writing and comprehension skills.
At COA, children are surrounded by a print-rich environment with plenty of books to encourage development of early reading skills. Music and Spanish, as foreign language, are also part of the early education curriculum.
Children develop socially in a variety of settings including play time, classroom activities and participation in the COA Presidential Fitness Program. The fitness program helps instill a love of physical fitness at an early age, while emphasizing the importance of building endurance and cardiovascular strength through a variety of activities.
"We know young children are active learners and we foster an environment that encourages natural curiosity and creativity through exploration and discovery," Pryor said. "COA is an environment that facilitates development socially, emotionally, physically and cognitively. Each child is given the individualized attention needed to prepare them for higher learning."
Founded in 1999, Florida-based Children of America is a leading provider of high-quality child care and after-school programs. With about 1,500 employees, the firm operates more than 50 schools in Delaware, Illinois, Indiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Virginia and Wisconsin. With the opening of an additional 10 schools in 2012, the company will add about 350 new employees. An industry pioneer, Children of America's programs are developed to accommodate key age ranges and include innovative teaching methods such as "Tray Tasking," a learning tool proven to promote early reading and writing skills. Children of America is a subsidiary of World Wide Child Care Corp.