NCERT, in its preschool curriculum, advocates teaching in mother tongue for preschoolers. Council cites research which say children who attend preschool programmes in their mother tongue face fewer problems in comprehension. In case of areas where more than one language is spoken, NCERT says that teachers can use more than one language as medium of instruction. This, NCERT says, could eventually prepare the children for language used by the school as the medium of instruction. The curriculum also highlights the importance of exposing children to sign language as a foundation for inclusion.
The curriculum also recommends avoiding early formal instruction.
"Early focus on developing knowledge, skills and cognitive abilities in children harms their ability to develop a positive attitude, disposition to learn, be reflective, be inquisitive, be inventive, be resourceful, and being a problem solver."
NCERT also says that educators need to identify children with disabilities and minimise learning difficulties through early intervention. Early intervention can include speech and language therapy, physiotherapy, and development and work therapy.
About assessment, NCERT says, "On no account, should children be made to take any form of test or examination either oral or written. The purpose of evaluation at the pre-school stage is not to label a child as 'pass' or 'fail'."
NCERT says that assessment at preschool level should be directed toward learning new skills and focus on a child's strengths and not on their deficits.
The assessment of preschoolers could be done through non-traditional methods such as maintaining portfolios of individual child, rating scale, photos and videos etc.
Another important aspect of preschool education is engagement of parents to learning and development of the children.
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