December 15, 2014 --For many young children, the most important years of schooling come before they can even read. The young mind is malleable, able to develop linguistic, socio-emotional, physical and cognitive skills with ease. Early childhood development (ECD) programs that include education, health, nutrition and social protection components have the potential to improve a child’s growth and development, and school readiness, thereby improving their outcomes later in life.
This document provides a practical guide for policymakers and practitioners about how to invest in young children. It identifies 25 essential ECD interventions that can be delivered through five integrated packages at different stages in a child’s life, spanning the education, health, nutrition, water, sanitation, and social protection sectors. These five packages of interventions are:
(i) the family support package,
(ii) the pregnancy package,
(iii) the birth package,
(iv) the child health and development package, and
(v) the preschool package