Early chidhood education plays a very important role in a child’s life. It is the point in their life where they learn to read and write,it is their foundation.This is why it is important for those responsible for offering it to be well qualified.
An early childhood education degree will automatically lead one to teach children between the age of 3 and 8. The degree program includes a lot of activities, from theoratical to practical. Children are taught on how to teach students to read, first, then write, (the basics). Apart from reading they are also taught the most essential and relevant things a child needs to know. at their age, there are things that they wont comprehend. Also how to build a relationship with a child and the various games they can play with the children in order to make them ready for the teaching learning process.
Early childhood education degree is offered in universities and colleges. The requirement, in most countries is good academics, that is passed highly in high school, or even in some countries if you have a diploma in Early Childhood Education. In Kenya for example, apart from the above mentioned requirements, one can also get into the program if they have a certificate in Early Childhood Education. The course is like any other degree course (with the exception of programs like medicine, law, engineering), takes the same period of time. This varies in different countries as the Education system is not the same. In Australia, for example, it takes a maximum of four years except for ECD diploma holders; this take three years. During ones degree coarse, for example in Australia, those on training have to go to the field, practice what they have learnt and be assessed; this is part of course work.
Apart from academics, the teachers are also taught on how to relate with the children. They have to learn on how to make the children trust them. Without trust, children tend to be resistant. They have to stoop down to their level, humility is key. patience is also a virtue most required if one has to pursue this degree. It takes time, more so for these young minds. It will take time for them to master the art of writing, then how to write using a good handwriting. One must also be very understanding and tolerant. Being strict on them will make them hate school, they will be scared; of their teacher. If they make mistakes, correct them nicely. In short you will be acting the role of caregiver and teacher. This profession needs passion, without it, the teacher will not be able to get through to the students. These character traits are essential.
In conclusion, dealing with children between the age of 3 and 8 is not an easy task. As i have outlined above, there are certain character traits that are essential. Without this, the teaching learning environment will not be conducive, hence learning will not take place. Making children love you and so love school is a great deal for Early Childhood Education teachers. One must evaluate themselves before taking the course.