Learning is a process and a preschool starts the academic journey for your child. Most preschools admit children between the ages 2 and 4 and start instilling academic basics. Apart from getting familiar with numbers and alphabets, your child will develop social skills and even learn how to be independent and learn things such as sharing and adhering to the instructions. A preschool definitely makes a great start for your child, but you also must ensure that you look at all important factors before you select the preschool you find most suitable for your child.
1. School philosophy
It is amongst the most important factors to look for when choosing a school because it can determine the foundation that your preschooler gets. There are so many options, but the Montessori system seems to be very popular maybe because if fosters independence in your child. Other options that you can still consider include Waldorf that focuses on child creativity, Reggio Emilia which is an approach that follows the natural development of your child, Bank Street that is a child-centered education approach and Scope method where kids have personal goals set for them. The locality of education systems in your region can determine what options you have. It would be best to consider them all before then settling for what you find most helpful for the child.
2. School environment
Apart from making sure that the child-teacher ratio is good enough to ensure that every child receives the needed attention, you should look at how equipped the school is. For instance, are there enough toys and play items for the kids and are they enough for the number of kids? Does the school have enough play space for kids? If there is an outdoor play area, is it secure enough? Does it have a fence? Is the staff trained in handling first aid situations? It is not enough that your preschooler gets the best learning foundation with the right system, but the settings within which he or she learns from is also very important. Pay a visit to the school and inspect everything of importance including cleanliness.
3. School day length
Remember that your child is only preparing for school and hence the preschool thing should be as flexible and interesting as possible for the child. Longer hours of learning can be overwhelming for the little ones and for this reason many preschools go for a half a day or just a few hours every day. But because there are some that do extend the daily hours, make sure that you remember to ask about length options so you can select appropriate day length for your preschooler depending on how much they can handle at their age.
4. School distance
It might seem like a secondary concern, but is a very important factor to consider. The distance of the school from home will help you choose the right mode of transport for your child. If you can pick and drop your child to school the better it will be because of their tender age.