Just been listening to this podcast on Universal preschool, Maths for preschoolers and Reading to your children

On Universal preschool (00:00), the argument is that Preschool is the cornerstone of education – everything else is built upon it. That’’s what David Kirp has been telling Australia’s biggest and most profitable childcare company, ABC Learning. Universal preschool is something both major parties have talked about in Australia, but free preschool for all 3 and 4 year olds seems a very long way off – though South Australia is probably furthest along the track

On Maths (00:14) for preschoolers, it’’s usually assumed that kids don’’t start learning too much in the way of mathematics until they start school. Sure they read the odd counting book, or know how many feet they have, but despite the lack of formal learning, pre-school kids actually know a lot more about maths than you might think. Brian Doig has been looking at what sort of mathematical knowledge pre-schoolers have and how everyday tasks are a major part of developing that knowledge.

On Reading to your children (00:22), whilst studying children’’s language development, Susan Colmar found that there are a few key things parents should and should not do when they read to kids. One of her project’s focused on 15 mainly 3-5 year old pre-schoolers with language delay. After their parents made a few tweaks to how and how often they read to their children, there was a significant increase in their language skills.

We’re not up to even thinking about pre-school stuff yet, but I’d be keen to hear what your thoughts are on what is being said in this podcast.