KLAY Preschools and Daycare concludes 3rd edition of International Summit on Early Years 2021

Bengaluru : KLAY’s Institute of Early Childhood Education and Development (IECED), hosted and concluded the 3rd edition of its International Summit on Early Years (ISEY) on 3rd, September 2021. The virtual event saw participation from more than 2500+ stakeholders of the education ecosystem across India. With the theme “Parent-Teacher Partnerships, the foundation of Education in the new normal”, the focus of ISEY 2021 was to address how parents and teachers can develop a mutually beneficial relationship with the interest of child well-being with learning continuity at the core.

As part of his welcome speech, AK Srikanth, CEO, KLAY Preschools and Daycare said, “It gives me so much delight to see the ISEY platform gain momentum year after year. The topic this year – around parent-teacher partnerships – is one that is pertinent and extremely relevant with what the key stakeholders of the child’s learning process are going through. While teachers are working hard to keep children engaged given the new formats of education delivery, parents are grappling with their newly assumed role of primary caregiver and educator – all at once. The new adjustment strategies and coping mechanisms are emerging as interesting areas of study and we, at KLAY, are keen to build on them as a handbook for the future”.

The online summit witnessed engaging sessions such as:

an off-the-cuff live conversation with Kiran Bedi, Former Lieutenant Governor of Puducherry who discussed why it is important for parents to be invested in their child’s upbringing. She mentioned how parents’ and teachers’ thinking should be aligned in thinking so that their values are mutually reinforced in children at home and school. She also emphasised the importance of parental involvement in play based learning in the early years of childhood and the need for development of skills through vocational education.

a special address by Independent Educational Researcher and TED Prize Winner 2013, Prof. Sugata Mitra on ‘Going ‘Forward’ to Normal – A Practical Post-Pandemic Approach to Education’. During his address, Prof. Sugata Mitra discussed how making children independent learners should be a key takeaway from the pandemic from parents and teachers. Embracing technology to facilitate this is not an option but mandatory, according to him. Both stakeholders need to define the ‘normal’ that they want for the children.

a talk by globally renowned Early Years Education Expert, Prof. Stephen P. Zwolak on ‘Teaching is Discovery and Curiosity – Shape the Future by Holding the Hearts of Children’ where he addressed the audience on how parents and teachers are emotional, social and cognitive nurturers of a child who help them discover their curiosity. Praising the evolving role of teachers, he mentioned how they are responsible for giving children the hope to learn and live a better life for tomorrow.

Panel discussion highlights –

The event also comprised a panel discussion on the topic of educator-parent partnership, where eminent panelists Dr. Swati Popat Vats, Swetha Guhan, Prof. Vrinda. Datta and Shreya Mittal shared their expert insights on the best way for parents to engage with educators for the overall well-being and positive learning outcomes of their children. They discussed how parents and teachers adjusting to a new model of education delivery was an example of resilience and how they have helped each other build confidence. Nuances from each of the experts’ respective work on-ground was highly appreciated by the audience.

Highlighting the importance of ‘A Parent’s New Role in the Child’s Learning Journey’, a showcase session was organised with experts from the parenting community with significant social influence-

Vaishali BK, Educator and Children’s author spoke about how children can learn anywhere and anytime and that learning starts at birth

Nadir Kanthawala, Producer and Co-host of Parenting Podcast – Pops In A Pod spoke about the positives of his daughter’s online education journey and his key takeaways as a parent

Namrata Sadhwani, Editor of Momspresso (Hyderabad) spoke about the impact of physical exercise on her twin boys’ learning journey

Geetika Sasan Bhandari, Parenting columnist and writer, highlighted her learnings from helping her children transition to physical schools

In addition to these sessions, ISEY 2021 also had complimentary workshops on the topics of Emotional Health of Parents, How to work in tandem with your child’s teacher and Learnings From The World’s Best Preschool System in Finland. Hosted by distinguished education scholars and consultants, the workshops witnessed select participation of 150+ attendees per session.

Meghna Yadav, Head of Training & Development, IECED, concluded the event saying “ISEY 2021 is a unique platform and probably the only one focussing on Early Childhood Education at such a scale in India. I thank the teacher and parent community for their resilience and hardwork in the last year and wish them more strength in the future. It is our responsibility and privilege to come together in the interest of the child’s well-being and we at KLAY, will continue to champion this cause stronger every year”.
To listen to the speakers of ISEY 2021, please click on the following link to access the recorded session: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J5KXaMrGxBk