COVID-19 and the Preschool Curriculum

Abstract

The most rapid brain development happens within the first five years of children’s lives (Shonkoff, J.P., & Phillips, D. A. (2000). This time period sets the framework for how children will continue to develop and grow. Play is an integral part of a child’s learning because it targets all developmental domains, encourages independence, and promotes engagement (Hassinger-Das et al., 2017). Because of this, many preschools adopt a play-based curriculum. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the education challenges associated with it, many preschool children are lacking play-based experiences and are instead exposed to screens for large parts of their day. This drastic change will potentially affect children’s development now and later on in their lives. In this presentation, I will discuss exactly how the preschool curriculum has changed due to the shift towards virtual learning.