The future is now, and we are shaping it with our revolutionary implementations at EmBe Education. Our actions today impact not only the current state of our workforce and Sioux Falls community but also hold limitless potential for the future through the children we serve. By focusing on character development from birth to age 5, we lay a strong foundation for the success and well-being of children in our care. We believe that from an early age, our core values of Curiosity, Generosity, Autonomy, and Love are crucial. In this blog, we explain how character development in these formative years can lead to a brighter future for individuals and society. 

Why is character development crucial from birth to 5 years old?  

The birth to five years is critical for all aspects of development, representing 90% of brain development. As wholistic providers, we recognize that character development is crucial to nurture early and often. When children are encouraged to make good choices and take responsibility for building their communities, they are better able to achieve their potential.  

What are the key components of character development in early childhood?  

At EmBe Education, our core values are Curiosity, Generosity, Autonomy, and Love. When we imagine our preschool graduates entering Kindergarten, we want them to be able to say, “I am curious, I am generous, I am me, and I love you and me.”  

How can parents and educators foster character development in young children?  

One of the best approaches to fostering character development in young children is through positive narration – noticing aloud when a child’s actions are in accordance with our values and sub-values. At EmBe, our Circle of Empowerment identifies our values and sub-values and then gives examples of actions and feelings associated with each one. We use this to guide character development so that if a child struggles with something like sharing, we keep an eye out for when they do share. When that happens, we take note of it and remind the child the next time they struggle; “Remember when you shared with Ali? You did it before, and you can do it again!” This approach allows us to garner character development from a growth mindset – we don’t expect kids to be ‘perfect,’ we expect them to learn and grow! 

How does early character development impact a child’s future success in school and life?  

Early character development provides children with a foundation to build on when entering school. By adapting a growth mindset in the early years, children will be more resilient when it comes to learning tough things and building relationships. A quick Google search reveals thousands of articles on how character practice indicates high academic and social outcomes, which in turn is a major predictor of lifelong success.  
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How do early experiences shape a child’s character?  

More important than what children experience at early ages is how they’re taught to handle their experiences. When we create environments that allow children to explore, they naturally make mistakes and sometimes poor choices. Letting them know they can take responsibility for good and bad actions, celebrate or accept the consequences, and always have to work hard to be a good person instills a growth mindset in children that will serve them throughout their lives.   

Early character development has a long-term impact on adult relationships. Children who learn values like empathy, responsibility, and generosity are more likely to develop strong, positive relationships as adults. We’re on a mission to foster good character within all our EmBe kids and to set them up for lifelong success. Parents and educators play a crucial role in this process, using strategies like positive narration and modeling positive behavior. As we guide our children through these formative years, we lay the groundwork for resilient, responsible, and compassionate individuals.  

 Want to learn more about how we are building future leaders at EmBe? Contact Sarah Meagher for upcoming listening sessions and more information, at 

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