Early childhood education program

n the Netherlands, VVE stands for early childhood education programs

The original goal of early childhood education is that all children start primary school without deficits or delays. According to research, 15 to 20% of children in childcare are eligible for extra stimulation programs to address deficits/delays. About 20% of the children at the beginning of the primary school, for example, are not easily approachable in the Dutch language. Once accumulated, deficits/delays are often difficult to catch up with. With the help of early childhood education (VVE), the deficits/delays of 2- and 3-year-olds are often noticed, eliminated, and/or prevented.

The VVE programs were previously written for children with a disadvantage and the target group for which these programs were written for was four year old children and older. In 2010, the law OKE and many programs were adapted for large-scale childcare centers. Known programs such as Kaleidoscope, blocks, Bas, Puk and Ko were now offered for children starting at 2 years old. Because these programs were originally written for primary school children, and a simplified edition was later made for the large-scale childcare, it became difficult to apply these in a small-scale day care such as The Base Day Care. For example, some days a Base Day Care employee may work by themselves with a group of children and simplifying the activities for the younger children takes a lot of preparation.  With one person working, it is often not feasible to adapt, prepare, and apply these methods in small-scale childcare center.

Today, VVE is more than just a tool for addressing deficits and delays. All children benefit from the programs if their development is systematically and purposefully stimulated. Kiki is a VVE program for children from 0 to 4 years that was written especially for small-scale childcare centers with passion, quality, and personal development as starting points.

Kiki the bear

The program is supported by a teddy bear, appropriately named Kiki. Kiki came to live at The Base Day Care starting on October 1, 2013. Every month Kiki offers a different theme and together with the children Kiki experiences all sorts of adventures along with fun challenging activities related to the theme. The development areas that are central to Kiki are:

  • Motor development
  • Social-emotional development
  • Speech and language development
  • Calculated incentives

Parents are involved in Kiki: they know which themes are covered, which development areas are central, and which activities are accomplished with their child(ren). Parents are also encouraged to undertake activities with their child(ren) at home that are in line with the activities and theme of the month at the day care.  By both the day care workers and the parent(s) engaging in activities under the construct of Kiki, the programs effectiveness is strengthened. By staying current and involved in the Kiki program, parents are given tools to create a stimulating and challenging learning environment at home.