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What is a theory? According to Hearron and Hildebrand (2003) a theory is an organised set of related ideas, concepts, and principles that describes a particular area of knowledge. Management theory is an organised set of related ideas, concepts, and principles that describe the process of managing an enterprise or child development centre. Managers of programmes for children read theories to understand how children grow, develop, and learn to help them to make the right decisions.
Theories help managers of child development centres to understand how children grow and develop and how environments and activities help and hinder children’s development. Theories of human development also help managers and teachers to have developmentally appropriate practice in early childhood education programmes.