Promotion of the campaign "Preschool for all” with the sounds of children’s orchestra

Early education

UNICEF Montenegro
The children orchestra of the Vasa Pavic school plays for children
UNICEF Montenegro / Duško Miljanić / 2015
20 June 2015

BERANE/PLAV, Montenegro, 20 June 2015 – With the aim to promote early education and preschools as crucially important for child's development, Berane and Plav once again hosted the artistic and educational events for children and parents.

While listening to the music performed live by the children’s orchestra of the Music School “Vasa Pavic”, children in Berane and Plav played in the outdoor preschool organized by the NGO “Pedagogical Centre” and the Faculty for Preschool Education.

Irena Vukovic, conductor of children's orchestra, is pleased with the number of children present. "They are loyal listeners. They are very difficult to win over. Our colleagues from the Pedagogical Centre have been putting a lot of effort to make kindergarten closer to them. I think it is necessary to introduce education as early as possible, but of course through play. In similar way how we play musical instruments, they play with different things mostly through the game. I hope that this campaign will bring results, and that parents will realize that it is very important that children are involved, from three to four years of age already. They need to participate together in socializing, playing music, and drawing. This can only be done by trained teachers, who can keep them away from TV screens and cartoons, since children do not know how to communicate."

For most children, the orchestra's performance was a rare opportunity to learn something about musical instruments. With the help of young musicians from the orchestra, children from kindergarten had the opportunity to play the violin, cello, drums and other instruments.

"I played the violin. I learned to play the flute, too."

UNICEF Montenegro

"That instrument is called the violin. I would love to learn to play the piano."

"When I finish kindergarten, I will go to school. After that, I will go to college like my aunt Joca. I cannot wait to go to kindergarten. One day, my grandfather decided to buy me everything I needed. A dollhouse and a pink castle. Scooters and strollers, ballet shoes and a pet. A plush dog, and a cat. And a bunch of candies.”

"My mother took me to kindergarten yesterday, oh, how it was nice to play. Everywhere you can hear children’s laughter, and Goofy and Donald are painted. We learned that in kindergarten."

In the north of Montenegro, the poorest region of the country, the preschool enrolment rates are the lowest. For these reasons, UNICEF and the Ministry of Education launched the campaign "Preschool for All" aimed to increase the preschool enrolment rate in five municipalities where the rate is the lowest: Bijelo Polje, Rozaje, Berane, Plav and Adrijevica.

Dragana Osmajlić, a kindergarten teacher from Berane, believes that the campaign "Preschool for all" is well organized. "I think it is a great advertisement for us, for the kindergarten. Literally everything that we do in the kindergarten, everything that we teach them through game, is shown here in the open. I want to thank UNICEF, the Pedagogical center, all volunteers who have been participating in all of this actively and creatively. I want to thank the actors as well, the music school "Vasa Pavic", and all participants, since all of this has been really wonderful. There has been a huge response, as you can see.

Preschool for all campaign promotion
UNICEF Montenegro / Duško Miljanić / 2015

The key findings of the survey conducted among the parents of children aged 3-6 who do not attend preschools and live in the north of Montenegro indicate that over 60 percent of them say they lack information on the work of preschools.

A lot of parents say there is always someone at home who can take care of a child and one in four parents believe children should not start learning before they go to school.

Ivana Scekic, a mother from Berane, says that her child is motivated to go to kindergarten."She is going to school next year, and it is beneficial for her, and she herself wants to go to kindergarten. She had already started once but she was too young, and now she decided to go to kindergarten. I think that the admission price is too high compared with the standard of living in Berane. I think that more parents would send their children to kindergarten if the price was more affordable."

Another mother, Milijana Veljic, points out that although parents play a big role in education of their children, preschool is very important. "Kindergarten is very special for children, not just because they spend time there, but because they also learn. They have their schedule, and in schools, there is a difference between kids who went to kindergarten, and those who did not. It is not only a need, it is also important for their development and socialization.”

Learning from age 3 to 6 in a small group for three hours per day, five days per week, has a large positive influence on children success during vocational and higher education, and even later in life.