All posts by Early Childhood Australia

Early Childhood Australia (ECA) has been a voice for young children since 1938. We are the peak early childhood advocacy organisation, acting in the interests of young children, their families and those in the early childhood field. ECA advocates to ensure quality, social justice and equity in all issues relating to the education and care of children aged birth to eight years.

Children’s wellbeing goes hand in hand with their fathers’ mental health

The partnership between educators and families for the child’s development is at the core of early childhood practice. That’s why it’s so important that we understand how mothers and fathers are doing when it comes to mental health. Emerging evidence shows that supporting fathers’ mental health early in their parenting journey has positive effects on children […]

Why do children lie, and is it normal?

This article, written by Penny Van Bergen and Carol Newall, first appeared on The Conversation, on July 4, 2018. Children typically begin lying in the preschool years, between two and four years of age. These intentional attempts at deception may worry parents, who fear their child will become a pint-sized social deviant. But from a developmental perspective, lying in […]

The time for first steps is over: Doing better for all young children

‘Children have taught me the most important lessons about advocacy’ says DR CINDY BLACKSTOCK. They are ‘experts in love and fairness’ yet ‘we often view children in ways that reduce their dignity and development’. Dr Blackstock, an international keynote speaker at the 2018 ECA National Conference in Sydney (19–22 September), spoke with ECA about moral courage and […]

‘No such thing as a bad kid’, says self reg expert

Why does self-regulation matter more than self-control? Professor Stuart Shanker shares his views on this and much more, including how educators can learn the signs and respond to children’s stress cycles. Young children make ‘dramatic advances’ when the adults in their lives—educators, teachers and family members—develop their own self-regulation, according to Professor Shanker. He spoke […]

Controversy over Sorry Sorry—a welcome debate arising from ECA’s Reconciliation Symposium

When a popular children’s picture book came under the spotlight at ECA’s 2018 Reconciliation Symposium in May, it was ‘reconciliation in action’: a chance to express and hear strong, conflicting views, to listen, learn and rethink. For ECA, it triggered reflection and a search for more perspectives. An important and expanding part of ECA’s work […]

Families are where learning begins

Families are where learning begins. Babies and young children are naturally curious, responsive and eager to explore their surroundings. Families—in all their glorious diversity and ‘not quite perfection’—are where the young child starts this journey, a lifelong path outwards from self, towards mastery and understanding. First conversations and relationships, creativity, capacity to express joy, kindness, […]

Seven things adults can say to a young girl instead of ‘I love your dress’

When ECA worked on the Start Early. Respectful relationships for life project, aimed at fostering relationship skills in very young children, educators commented on how often adults—educators, family, neighbours and friends—will comment on a girl’s dress when there are so many other things to talk about. Even with the best intentions, one educator said it […]

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