In a country still wracked by inequality, where many people are suffering because of the inadequacies of their education, Early Childhood Development (ECD) is a way for both the adult practitioner and the growing child to improve their outcomes in life.
Studies conducted over the last 10 years have shown that children’s brains develop based on the stimuli they get in the first 1000 days of their lives. Children need lots of varied stimuli in order to develop strong brains. Once children have attained the age of eight, the development their brains have received is set, and the neural pathways available for learning are set. Children who receive enough of the right stimuli have more neural pathways than those who do not.
Children need visual, aural, tactile, cognitive and social stimuli in order to optimally develop their brains.
It used to be thought that the stimuli needed by developing children could only successfully be provided in the home. However, newer studies have shown that children can receive these stimuli from caregivers in an ECD setting and develop the same strong brains. The courses provided by READ allow practitioners to learn what stimuli are needed, and to structure lessons and programmes which provide these stimuli in a variety of settings.
READ has over 20 years' experience in the ECD arena. Over time, READ has developed programmes and courses which allow facilitators to teach ECD in any setting, whether rural or urban. READ’s training is practitioner-focused and designed to help people develop both the skills and resources needed to provide an excellent ECD service within their communities.
The courses include tips on how to make toys and games and other learning resources with recycled supplies, and locally available materials. READ recognises the difficulties in accessing resources in many communities in South Africa.
The Fundamentals Course is an entry level course which allows practitioners and others to do specific modules which provide them with the basics needed to complete the Further Education and Training (FET) or Higher Certificates. These are mathematics and communication courses which are completed separately from the certificates themselves.