Why we must invest in the young

Kota Kinabalu: Quality early childhood education not only benefits the child but also parents, the Taska and kindergartens, and in society at large.

“By investing in our children we are actually investing in our future generation.

Thus early childhood education is a very important part of child development,” said Community Development and Consumer Affairs Minister Datuk Jainab Ahmad.

“The emotional, social and physical development of young children has a direct effect on their overall development and on the adults that they will become.

“This is why we need to raise awareness among the public on the need to invest in young children so as to maximise their future wellbeing,” she said in her speech when opening the first International Early Childhood Conference 2017, here, Monday. Her speech was read out by Sabah Welfare Department Director Mohd Noor Wahab.

Jainab said teachers are important assets to the country and that quality early childhood educators will produce quality education for children which will affect the future generation.

“We thank teachers for all their hard work, passion and endurance to keep doing what they do.

It is not an easy job but a very important one.

“They are the ones who will be training our future generations. One day these children will be the ones who will run our country, so teachers, you better make sure you do your job well.

“Quality can only start when we work towards it. We must upgrade ourselves, we must change our ways and we must have passion in what we do.

“As the Chinese proverb says, ‘when the winds of change blow, some people build walls and others build windmills’.

“Together, let’s build windmills and let’s work towards building quality early childhood education,” she said.

On another note, Jainab thanked organising chairlady Datin Rahimah Quadra and her team for their efforts.

“It is great to see different organisations collaborating and working together for the greater good.

When many people work together, the job gets done faster and it is easier for everyone,” said Jainab, who hoped there will be more such conference in the future.

Meanwhile, Rahimah said through the conference, the teachers were motivated, inspired and enriched with new ideas and knowledge to improve their profession as educators.

“Research has shown that the first eight years of life are crucial to success in life.

During those early years, how a child learns and develops – mentally, emotionally and socially – is critical.

“As early childhood educators, we must realise this important role we play in shaping lives and characters of our children into future leaders.

“We are not just teachers, we are the managers of the world’s greatest resources: children.

“It is my hope also that this conference will not just end here, but ‘jumpstart’ the journey towards quality childhood education in our State and country.

“Let us not just be happy with what we have but keep working hard to further improve,” she said.

A total of 250 teachers and early childhood educators from across Malaysia as well as Singapore attended the two-day conference themed “Towards Quality Early Childhood Education” at Klagan Hotel, Warisan Square, here.

by Sherell Jeffrey.

Read more @ http://www.dailyexpress.com.my/news.cfm?NewsID=119656

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