Early childhood education classes represent much more than the first steps in learning to read, write or calculate.
In 2017, Nai Qala opened 2 pre-school classes for children from 4 to 6 years old. The great success of the pilot program prompted the organization to expand the project to 7 other classes in 2018. The courses not only set up the ground for numeracy and literacy but provide opportunities to develop creativity, have fun, socialize and learn ethical values and social behavior.
“A little birdie told me that” … or the impact of the Nai Qala preschool program in 9 villages in Ghazni province.
- A little birdie told me that boys and girls have a lot of fun playing together. Playing activities set the ground for more gender equity.
- A little birdie told me that the children are learning solidarity. Several children were seen comforting one of their classmates on the way to school and carrying the bag of another friend who had scratched his knee. Helping each other is one of the numerous ethical values taught in the early childhood education program.
- A little birdie told me that moms are surprised to see that their children do less foolish things when they are at home. We also heard that some young boys behave much better with their mothers since they started attending early childhood education classes. Respect and tolerance are some core social skills children learn at school.
- A little birdie told me that parents are happy to see that their children eat properly at home and finish their plates without complaining.
- A little birdie told me that the little boys who play with dinner sets at school are motivated to help with the cooking at home. Some older siblings are amazed to see their little brothers helping their mother to clear the table and wash the dishes. The program enables children to solve the basic problems they encounter every day.
- A little birdie told me that the family and guests’ shoes laid in front of the entrance door no longer disappear but are now proudly lined up.
- A little birdie told me that the dads are convinced by the early childhood education program and are 100% committed. They bring wood to heat the classroom.
- A little birdie told me that Legos and construction toys are very successful. It is a new type of toy for children in remote rural areas and an ideal way to develop their creativity and imagination. The imitation games (grocery, dinner, doctor’s sets) are also very popular among children. Children attending the class enjoy a friendly and pleasurable atmosphere where they can play safely and try new things.
- A little birdie told me that children make the connection between what they learn in school about the environment and what they apply outside. The early childhood program aims at promoting children’s awareness about themselves, others, surrounding objects, society and nature.
- A little birdie told me that the teachers are all surprised to see the progress of their young students on a day-to-day basis. Attending a pre-school class strengthens the abilities in listening, speaking, reading, writing and counting, in accordance with each child’s capacity.
- A little birdie told me that parents have peace of mind when their children are in class and can devote themselves fully to their work during this time.
- A little birdie told me that children do not fool around when they’re in class. They are as good as gold.
- A little birdie told me that the school has created new friendships between children whose families no longer spoke to each other… and that, as a result, dialogue is resuming between adults.