Learning and Teaching in Early Education: The Potentiality of the Educational Context

Learning and Teaching in Early Education: The Potentiality of the Educational Context

Eva M. Romera (University of Córdoba, Spain), Olga Gómez-Ortiz (University of Córdoba, Spain), Carmen Viejo (University of Córdoba, Spain) and Rosario Ortega-Ruiz (University of Córdoba, Spain)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-5225-5167-6.ch002
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This chapter presents how interaction with the social world stimulates the learning ability in the early years. There are two types of social relationships that affect the development of the individual in childhood: adult-child relationships and peers. Both social systems give rise to different vital experiences that will influence their social development. During the first years of age, the adults who surround, care for, and provide support help acquire a fundamental role in the social development of the child. Attachment between the child and family, parental educational styles, and family discipline become basic elements of analysis. Peer relationships are transformed with the entrance to preschool. The school environment is the second stage of life in common. This chapter analyzes the learning process of children and the influence of the most important developmental contexts such as family, peers, and teachers in this process.
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How Children Learn In Preschool Years

Learning can be carried out in many different ways. We sometimes learn with little conscious control, without having to plan, like when we decide to take an umbrella because we see clouds in the sky and we have learnt that this may indicate rain. However, in other occasions, a high level of organization and structure in the learning process is required, like when we start using letters to end up writing our name and creating new words. Moylett (2013) identifies three main actions involved in preschool learning: a) to explore, which includes the direct immersion in the experience and which entails the implementation of the abilities to investigate, experience, imitate and interact with things and people; b) to imagine, think and create, which include all the mental abilities which imply creating and exploring hypothetical worlds, analysing and communicating experience, as well as developing new ideas and plans in order to face a certain situation; and c) to entertain while learning, which entails the ability of being involved and concentrated on what someone is doing, paying attention, keeping a continuous effort and enjoying the achievement of objectives.

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