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The term early childhood education typically encompasses education for children from birth to age 5 (kindergarten entry) or, often, age 8 (third grade). Early childhood education services include center-based care for infants and toddlers, early Head Start, prekindergarten, and kindergarten. Common to all of these services is that they target the child, but not typically parents. Parenting education is of central importance to effective early childhood education.

It is a well-established fact that brain development begins before birth, and a tremendous amount of critical, deterministic development takes place in the first few years of life. The vast majority of a child’s earliest experiences take place during interactions between children and their parents within the home environment. Very early experiences, starting prenatally and through the first year, ...

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