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February 21st, 2020

Buffett Institute Releases Report on Increased Need for Early Childhood Educators

Watching my girls come home from preschool and kindergarten so excited about what they have learned that day has got to be one of my favorite parts of being a mama – hands down! The joy in their eyes when they exclaim “I can write that letter myself now!” or “I know all about that – let me tell you what I learned today!” is so fun to see. Not to mention, sometimes I even learn a thing or two from them!

Their little brains are taking in so much information all of the time, and watching them grow and learn is nothing short of incredible to witness. To highlight just how influential those first few years of life are, the Buffett Early Childhood Institute at the University of Nebraska at Omaha (based in Wonder Bunch’s hometown of Omaha!) released a groundbreaking report on January 30 that states: ninety percent of a child’s brain is formed by the time they are six years old – 90%!! To discover that nearly their entire brain has been formed before most children start elementary school was something I found incredibly interesting. 

The report goes on to outline the urgent need to prioritize the early childhood workforce in Nebraska. Ensuring that the people who are teaching and caring for our children are educated appropriately and are also being supported in the ways necessary to keep them invested is so important. The report specifically calls for full funding of early childhood development by 2030, with all parents able to access a program for their child no matter their location or ability to pay. With so much at stake, this is something we simply cannot afford to not work on.

As I prepare to send my third little girl to preschool in the fall, I think constantly about how important it is that she be cared for and loved by every educator she comes into contact with and that all starts with supporting those individuals. These are the first people we trust to keep our kids safe and healthy outside of our homes and/or childcare establishments, and I am grateful everyday that I’ve seen my two older girls totally fall in love with their teachers (and vice versa!). 

It’s time that we give early childhood education and the people that work with and care for our kids the time and attention they deserve. Thank you to the Buffett Early Childhood Institute for all they are doing to address this important issue!