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Going to preschool is an important milestone but finding the right one for your child can be an extremely daunting task for parents. Preschool has a profound impact on your child’s development and the effects can last a lifetime so it’s a big decision. If you have a toddler at home and it’s time to let go don’t fret. Here are five essential elements you should look for when trying to choose a preschool.
This is one of the most important factors that should influence your decision. Do the teachers seem comfortable and confident in their capabilities? Do they take a real interest in the children and what they have to say? Closely observe to see how well the teachers interact with the children and look out for smiles and laughter in the classroom. It’s just as important that the teachers are happy and enjoy what they do. An easy way to find this out is to ask about staff turnover.
In any preschool, there should be a well-thought-out curriculum that you can discuss with the teachers. The curriculum should be well-balanced and cover a vast array of topics such as music, arts and crafts, science, language skills, sensory play and much more. It’s important to remember that children of this age learn from play so you shouldn’t expect them to sit down at desks filling out worksheets all day.
Every preschool should have a Discipline Policy which details how disruptive behavior is handled. It’s important to know the school’s approach to discipline so ask for a copy and read it through. The policy should include preventative measures as well as disciplinary consequences.
When it comes to discipline, the classroom rules should be made clear to the children and they should understand the consequences if they break them. However, it shouldn’t just be about disciplining them when they are bad. The children should also receive positive reinforcement to encourage good behavior. Again, don’t be afraid to ask the teacher how they do this. Usually, they will have a reward chart or something similar.
Preschools that promote kindness is another thing to look out for. This is something that the preschool in Louisville outlines on their website with the ‘Kind Child’ program that they have developed. Within this, they get their teachers to focus on building traits such as thankfulness and empathy for their students.
Teacher To Child Ratio
Teacher to child ratio can be a key quality indicator. Preschools with a lower teacher to child ratio tend to create better learning environments. Rather than supervising large groups, the teachers are able to provide more caring and supportive interactions to individual children.
Cleanliness is another essential element that you should look for. Preschools are a haven for germs so it’s important to find one that has a high standard of cleanliness to minimize the risk of your child getting sick. For example, kids like to put toys in their mouths so these should be regularly washed and sanitized. Don’t be afraid to ask about their cleaning procedures.
Well, there you have it. You should now know how to go about choosing a suitable preschool for your little one – it’s time to get exploring those preschools!