Choosing A Preschool Program For Your Child

Posted on: 8 February 2018

Choosing a preschool program for your child can be a difficult decision. If your child has always been home with a parent, it's a new chapter in your life with your child. If your child has always been in daycare, moving to the preschool level is the first step toward their elementary school education. Before starting to tour preschools, parents should first choose what type of preschool program interests them most. 

Co-Op Preschool

A co-op preschool has heavy parental involvement. Parents are typically required to volunteer in the classroom for a certain number of hours throughout the academic year. They also may be asked to help with ongoing projects, like providing snacks or cleaning the school. There often are events that parents are required to attend, like school clean-ups or fundraisers. A co-op allows a parent to get to know the other families involved in the school and build a community of families all interested in their child's education. The volunteer aspect of the co-op also allows parents to see how the school day is organized and get to know how their child interacts with the others in a group. It gives the parent a different view of their child's strengths and weaknesses and allows them to better assess their child's kindergarten readiness. This type of program can be difficult for a family that has two working parents or a single working parent, unless the parent or parents have flexible work schedules. 

Play-Based Preschool

Play-based preschools are often called child-centered preschools, because during the school day the children are allowed to choose activities based on their interests. The classroom is often split up into different areas, such as an art area, a science area, a dress-up area, and a block area, and children rotate throughout the areas as they desire, socializing with their peers. Teachers step in to facilitate communication between the children, and the students learn important social skills, as well as rudimentary math skills and reading skills, since most areas are labeled with signs.

Academic Preschool

Academic preschools are often called teacher-directed preschools. Children are in a structured setting and teachers lead them through different activities. Often, the children are taught shapes and colors, how to tell time, and how to recognize different letters and understand the sounds that they make. Some parents feel that this structured setting helps prepare their children for the very structured environment they'll encounter in a kindergarten classroom.

For more information on getting your child into the right preschool program, contact companies like Preston Kiddie Kollege.