Early education for 0-6/7-year-olds is a growing concern for all educational factors and is gaining an increasingly important status in Romania. The pre-school period is a stage in the child’s development, in which the main features of the future personality are gradually being built, seated, intertwined and gradually delimitated.
An integral part of education, the kindergarten makes a specific contribution to the arming of children with fundamental tools of intellectual work. In this preschool education cycle, it is mainly aimed at preparing children for learning, in order to successfully cope with both the school activity as a whole and the self-refresher activity after the end of the school.
That is why the educator is considered to be an architect, a designer, and a „constructor” of a very different genre that traces the future lines of development of growing beings and a permanent becoming. The term „game” is not a scientific notion and it is not possible to clearly delimit the human behavior specific to the game.
Learning is, from the pedagogical point of view, the activity designed by the didactic framework to determine behavioral changes in the pre-school personality, by capitalizing on their ability to acquire knowledge, skills, strategies and cognitive attitudes.
Development means complex bio-psycho-social changes of the individual, hatched over time. Changes are well structured on ages, although age itself does not explain them. In conclusion, development means to grow, to mature and to learn. Development is the complete process by which the individual adapts to his / her environment. But since adaptation is through growth, maturation and learning, these are just aspects of development. The main difference between learning and development is that learning requires immediate adaptation in the short term, while development requires gradual adaptation over a long period of time.
According to a modern concept in the kindergarten, „learning” acquires a broad sense not only for the accumulation of knowledge but is conceived as an activity closely tied to the psycho-social side of the child by supporting the concrete structure of his thinking. In the kindergarten the spontaneous and the directed education is realized, especially through the content of the compulsory activities, that is, on the path of those modalities, which announce and prepare the child for the lesson in the school, for the gradual passage from the game to the school activity. Through these, the child receives sufficient and accurate information about the environment and forms the ability to observe, acquire the right understanding, understands the notion of crowd, learns to operate with crowds, under certain conditions that become requirements of the way of working.
Understanding is conditioned by the active participation of the child in the process of knowing by engaging him in the discovery of the new in his unknown universe, by emphasizing the problematic elements.
All areas of development are interdependent, ie the development of a domain favors the development of the child in another field, and the learning experiences are all the more significant for the child’s progress as they simultaneously address all areas of development. The pace of development of each domain is different from child to child.
Each area of development, cognitive, socio-emotional, physical, has a certain specificity and therefore there are objectives of early education that are specific to a field, but whose realization implicitly determines the goals of another development field.
For all those who contribute to raising, caring for and developing children, standards are an important resource that guides actions to support and stimulate learning, normal and full child development. As children learn and develop by exploring the world as a whole, which requires and stimulates the child in all its aspects, learning and development standards are structured on all areas of child development. By interacting with the environment (understood in its complexity – physical environment and beings) children experience experiences that have implications for their development in its complexity. Every action of conquering the environment in which they live and develops involves both cognitive processes, mental operations, emotional and motoric feelings. In order to live such experiences, the child must be supported in his / her development in a cognitive, socio-emotional and physical way.
In the broadest sense, standards are a set of statements that reflect expectations about what children should know and be able to do. These are defined to support the growth and development of children from birth to school entry, both in the family environment and in other early education services.
For teachers, formulating development and learning standards is a benchmark in organizing and designing activities in early education. They are relevant only at the level of a group of children and not individually in the sense of diagnosing the child’s development profile. They aim at assessing the level at which all children in a group are located. The observation of children based on standards and indicators aims at shaping the profile of the group of children in order to know the areas of development that are less appealing through activities carried out in the kindergarten and in this way to intervene in the design of future activities.
Cognitive development is essential to everyday life. It refers to the processes through which children acquire the ability to think, assimilate and use the information they receive. The development of psychic capacities is achieved through the interaction of the child with the physical and social environment, through which children mentally construct new concepts, discovering them. At the same time children learn many things from adults and other children.
This process of learning through learning and discovery is done in many ways: language, logical thinking, spatial representation, creative, musical thinking, the involvement of body movements, but the easiest and most pleasant way to achieve the objectives of early education is to play in all forms his manifestation.