According to a recent article on Nursery World, an OFSTED inspector found that 53% of children had fallen behind in their personal, social and emotional development, due to the pandemic. As well as this, physical development has had a fall back of 19% and literacy and mathematics a fall back of 25%.
During the pandemic, children were deprived of essential experiences, including social contact. Due to the changes and restrictions that were put in place, they were less exposed to everyday conversation and behaviours. With these basic aspects of their lives removed, it has slowed the development of many children. This has resulted in children being unable to progress and develop academically as well as being unable improve and increase their vocabulary.
As well as affecting children’s vocabulary, the pandemic has also significantly impacted the progression of social awareness. It has made children more vulnerable to developing social anxiety. This is because their interaction has only been with immediate family. Being in an environment where they are surrounded by teachers and classmates is something they are no longer used to.
However there is support that is being implemented to help with the struggles that children are facing. The government has invested in helping early years children to catch up, in order to help minimise these struggles.
The difficulties and setbacks that many children are facing appear before they start attending school. This means we don’t need to wait until they start at school to begin helping them.
Nurseries help develop skills such as speech and language as well as social awareness and confidence. Something as simple as nursery rhymes and children’s books can help children to understand and communicate using more words/ sentences. They can also help develop non-verbal communication in children from birth.
Using this opportunity to help your child interact with other children before they start school can help your child’s social awareness and confidence. This will reduce the risk of them developing social anxiety and will help them thrive.