Children living in the most disadvantaged areas will average half the NAPLAN scores in reading, writing and numeracy tests than those living in the least disadvantaged areas.
The gap between the most and least advantaged areas in Australia is reflected in educational inequality.
Australia is doing well on enrolling four-year-olds in pre-school, but the picture on three-year-olds is less clear.
The latest OECD report on early learning education and care gives Australia a mixed report card.
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A student revising class work in Kenya. The quality of maths teaching in schools can have a profound impact on learner interest.
The quality of what pupils come to know, understand and are able to do has a big impact on students. Low quality leads to boredom as well as fear and anxiety about maths as a subject
Early childhood educators are paid below the national average.
Research shows early childhood educators tend to prop up their low-paid jobs using their household income, or by borrowing from families.
A pre-school class in Nairobi, Kenya.
Kenyans need to be wary of early learning centres that pressure children with academic drills.
Children with at least two years of preschool achieve much higher scores than those who attend no preschool or only one year.
Two years of high-quality preschool is one of the most effective strategies we have to change the trajectories of children from disadvantaged backgrounds.
Attending two years of preschool improves children’s readiness for school.
Ireland is the latest country to offer two years of preschool education to all children. Is it time Australia followed suit?
Teaching and learning from music often occurs spontaneously.
Mignon van Vreden
The value of music-inspired play in early childhood should never be underestimated.
One in three Australian children do not attend early education for the hours needed to make a difference.
The children most likely to benefit from quality early education are the most likely to miss out. Here are five key changes the government needs to make to address this.
Jazz in the classroom not only teaches children to play instruments; they may also learn a range of essential life skills.
Many middle-class parents buy classical CDs because it is supposed to make their kids clever. But a jazz-loving academic has started using her favourite genre in early childhood learning.
Trying on new roles.
Boston Public Library/Flickr
Research has found a relationship between pretend play and a child's developing creativity, understanding of others and social competence with peers.
The shadow minister for early education, Kate Ellis, said child care costs had undergone a ‘massive increase’ since the last federal election.
Labor's shadow minister for early education, Kate Ellis, said there has been a massive increase in child care costs under the Coalition government. Is that an accurate reflection of the data?
Preschool attendance has been shown to improve literacy and numeracy for Indigenous children.
The Closing the Gap report shows a mix of successes and failures, but early childhood education holds the key to significant progress.
A boy in the Ivory Coast practises reading his letters. Children can learn a lot about reading from each other during the “School Game”.
The benefits of learning through play are well documented. In rural communities in South Africa, "playing school" produces passionate lifelong readers.
What children learn in their first 2000 days of life is the most vital, so early learning shouldn’t be dismissed as babysitting.
The reorganisation of federal ministerial portfolios this week moved early childhood education and care from social services to education. This is a good thing.
Sesame Street isn’t only a television show.
A recent study concluded that children who watched Sesame Street in the 1970s fared better in school. Why?
A combination of education and care makes Sweden’s early childhood education so much better than Australia’s.
Most people have heard that Finland leads the world in education, but fewer have heard that Finland’s neighbour, Sweden, is the international leader in early childhood education and care.
The Productivity Commission’s report on childcare will help inform the Abbott government’s soon-to-be-unveiled ‘families package’.
Many of the Productivity Commission's proposals derive from assumptions that the funding of these services should ensure minimal interference, with a classic, market-based model for meeting "demand".
Developing the creativity habit requires more than just good intentions.
Navy Hale Keiki School/Flickr
A long-term trend of declining creativity test scores has renewed interest in mechanisms to stimulate and foster the development of creativity – at home, in schools, universities and workplaces. At the…