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close this bookEarly Child Development: Investing in the Future (WB)
close this folderPart II. The practice
View the documentIntroduction
View the documentEducating parents
View the documentTraining caregivers
View the documentDelivering services to children
View the documentReforming formal education systems to include preschoolers
Open this folder and view contentsEducating through the mass media


There is now a need for reliable and valid information about what works, why it works, for whom it works, and under what conditions it works.

- Raymond Collins and others (1990, p 18)

The mounting body of evidence that early childhood intervention can result in substantial future gains has prompted many nations to incorporate preschool programs into their national and regional development agendas. There is rising interest in these countries in nonformal models of education and care. It is thus not surprising to find programs based on the nonformal community development model operating in India (Integrated Child Development Services), Colombia (the hogares commentaries, or home based day care centers), Kenya (the Harambees, or "Let's Pull Together" movement), Brazil (cres commentaries, or community nurseries), Jamaica (the Community Study program, or backyard nurseries), the United Kingdom (Playground Movement), and Venezuela (the hogares de cuidado diario, or home day care program).

Because differences in cultural and economic environments make it impossible to rely on just one approach in early child development, it is important to identify a range of effective models rather than emphasize a single program model.

This section describes different programs that countries have used to promote children's physical and mental development. The interventions are grouped in five major types.