Healthy Habits
29 March, 2024

Encouraging Healthy Habits and Holistic Well-being in Early Childhood Education

Healthy Habits and Holistic Well-being: Sometimes, it’s easy to slip into assuming that an early learning centre is about teaching subjects to children, such as numbers, basic reading or painting etc.

Healthy Habits and Holistic Well-being in Early Childhood Education

While these things are important, these programs also seek to help children develop healthy habits and good lifestyle standards that may have a significant impact on their later lives.

Early learning centres and holistic approaches

Children at younger ages aren’t always mature enough to instinctively understand the relationships between one thing and another – relationships that are often referred to as ‘consequentiality’.

In non-academic terms, this simply means that a child doesn’t always naturally grasp that if they handle food with dirty hands then that may have a knock-on effect on tummy troubles. Another example might be understanding that eating lots of sweeties isn’t going to be good for their young and fragile milk teeth.

Like adults, children tend to learn better and retain that learning longer, if they’re given the ‘why’. That means they can differentiate between hard-to-understand adult rules and things that they fully understand the logic of.

Explaining to a child that a given small activity forms part of a much greater whole which might ultimately affect things such as their health and well-being, is the primary objective behind holistic well-being in early childhood education.

What does it cover?

An early learning centre might cover issues such as:

  • hygiene;
  • healthy eating principles;
  • exercise;
  • the importance of sleep time;
  • dangers around the house (electrical plugs etc.);
  • the wonders of nature but also, why sometimes caution is necessary in areas such as sun exposure;
  • respect for others and participation in collective activities.

Most children relish learning about these things.

The role of parents

There is no suggestion here that parents are somehow failing to teach their children these essential things. However, as many parents learn to their frustration, children sometimes listen to and retain information provided by trusted teachers, rather more so than they may do to their parents!

An early learning centre must only communicate values and stances that are fully in accord with parental views. Something that might be very confusing to children would be a situation where what they’re being taught in preschool is contradicted by what they’re being told by their parents. Most early learning centres will be more than willing to explain to parents well in advance, just what their teaching programs are and the subjects they’ll be covering.

Why holistic education matters

All people are part of a complex surrounding environment. How we behave and the choices we make in interacting with that environment, significantly affects things such as our health and happiness.

It can never be too early to communicate those basic principles to children.

If you’d like to discover more of our holistic education programs, why not contact us and make an appointment for an on-site visit? We’d love to meet you and hear your views on these important subjects.

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