The first few years of a child’s life are critical to their holistic development and having a low child to teacher ratio in early childhood education helps to foster this growth journey. Children typically require more focused care when they are younger in order to stay safe and have their needs met according to early child childhood education practices. From infancy to age two, teachers should only be in charge of a small group of children.
The ideal number of students for each teacher in early childhood education is 5. However, class sizes may increase as children become older as they are more independent in their movement and self-care. Children as young as 3 can flourish in schools with up to 10 classmates. By the age of four, there may be 20 students for each class, usually accompanied by a teacher and assistant (20:1+1). Children who are five years old or older benefit from a maximum student-to-teacher ratio of 25:1+1.
There are numerous benefits of implementing the low child to teacher ratio in early childhood education. It is not just about educating and supervising children but about their holistic development. Holistic development involves emphasising the value of a child’s physical, social, emotional, cognitive, moral, artistic, and aesthetic qualities while taking into account the entire person. In order to maximise a child’s potential, it is important to acknowledge and cherish every aspect of their development in early childhood education.
Thus dedicated attention to every individual child is important. In this article, we will outline the 5 awesome benefits of implementing the low child to teacher ratio in early childhood education and how they affect a child’s development.
Benefits Of Low Child-Teacher Ratio In Early Childhood Education
1. Strong Student-Teacher Bonds
When early childhood education instructors are caring for children, they need to feel at ease and secure. Less children per teacher means that teachers can get to know their students better and build stronger relationships with every single one.
As teachers build more trust with each student, the children will naturally feel more comfortable and at ease in the classroom. Additionally, students will get to know one another better, enabling them to engage in positive peer interactions at a formative age that will influence their social development for the rest of their lives.
2. Better Classroom Safety
As a parent, you are aware that young children are inquisitive and love to explore their surroundings. However, they lack awareness of proper boundaries and must be watched closely in order to safely explore their surroundings and engage in social interaction.
Safety risks increase when a single teacher is responsible for monitoring a big group of young children. Eg. A single teacher in charge of 30 three-year-olds may get easily distracted and is unable to keep an eye effectively on every child in the classroom. Therefore, it is recommended to manage smaller class sizes as it proves easier to monitor and control the children. This essentially results in fewer instances of student disagreement, accidents, and other negative experiences.
3. Enhanced Learning Experience
A lower class size in early childhood education ensures that each student’s individual learning styles are taken into consideration rather than disregarded. Since teachers will be able to learn more about each of their students, they can tailor classroom activities to the particular needs of the children.
Teachers can choose curriculum subjects that align with their students’ interests and assign tasks that capitalise on their individual strengths. Additionally, they can offer each individual child with personalised learning programs and goals to aid in their overall development.
4. Improved Student Outcomes
Children go through a number of developmental stages as they grow older and prepare for their future academic growth. According to research, children who experienced lower student-to-teacher ratios in early childhood education performed better on standardised tests in their academic careers later.
Moreover, children are more likely to meet key milestones sooner and grow personally and academically while being in their early childhood education programmes. Since the teachers have more time to check in with each student and evaluate their performance in the classroom, teachers will be more aware of their students’ progress and know what to tweak in order to facilitate better growth.
5. Reduced Teacher Stress
In general, small class sizes are beneficial for everyone and are not limited to just children. Additionally, they provide teachers with many advantages, such as lesser work-related stress.
Teachers are better able to adopt a positive attitude in the classroom and are more likely to remain in their positions for an extended period of time when they operate in a less stressful setting. Preschools with low teacher turnover rates can give the children a more consistent early childhood educational experience.
Tots & Teddies
At Tots & Teddies, we have carefully crafted a well-balanced curriculum that adopts a thematic, inquiry-based approach through purposeful play, with the last term specially devoted to projects. We believe that every individual child is unique and holistic development is critical to their growth.
Our learning environments are planned carefully such that they are safe, secure, fun and responsive to children’s interests. They are also designed to spark curiosity and creativity, as well as invite exploration, manipulation and a sense of discovery.
In order to nurture a great and personalised learning environment, our child to teacher ratio is 3:1 for infant care and 5:1 for childcare. The maximum class size for our childcare is 10. Additionally, we are immersive bilingual and that means in a class of 10 children, 2 teachers will be assigned to them, of which one is a Chinese Language teacher.
With a good mix of children from different countries and ethnicities, your child will be able to learn and respect different cultures, ethnicities and beliefs. On average, the children mix in our school is 50% local and 50% international.
Furthermore, we use purifiers with VOC filters (featuring activated carbon to eliminate volatile organic compounds and chemicals in addition to TrueHEPA filtration) to consistently ensure high air quality throughout our centre. Our air conditioning system is also decentralised, allowing us full control over temperature settings to ensure classrooms are neither too hot nor too cold.
In summary, enrolling your child in an early childhood education programme with a low child to teacher ratio will benefit them tremendously. They are able to learn and play in a safe and nurturing environment while having the curriculum personalised for their individual needs and goals.
By building trusting relationships in a classroom with low child to teacher ratio, it elevates the children’s sense of social awareness and emotional growth which will help them in the later stages of social and emotional development.