Providing your child a good quality early childhood education can help set them up for academic success in the years to come. Choosing the right preschool can be challenging and overwhelming. There are several things to consider and questions to ask when looking for a good child care center. To ensure you’re making the best choice, here are some key indicators of strong preschool programs that you should look for.
A good reputation
A good preschool should be known for its warm and nurturing environment. It should be a place where your little one will feel comfortable and safe. Do some research by making a couple of phone calls to the schools you are looking at. You can also seek feedback from other parents, friends and family. While the school’s reputation isn’t an absolute indication of whether or not they will be perfect for your child, hearing negative things about a certain school should be considered a red flag.
Educational philosophy of the preschool
While it is important to consider the school’s program based on practice skills, it is equally important to make sure that the preschool offers plenty of opportunities for learning. Choose a preschool that offers a balanced program nurturing a child’s cognitive, emotional and social growth and development. There should also be plenty of time dedicated for games and having fun. The center should see to it that parents and families are welcomed to be part of the program. There must be a certain level of openness and transparency between the preschool and parents. The preschool must provide regular feedback and updates about the children’s progress and development.
Quality of teaching
At first glance, preschools look a lot like kids just running and playing around. In reality, good preschools also offer lessons and teach children the fundamentals of the alphabet and counting. Cognitive development happens in a preschool class. Preschool is also a place where kids develop other valuable skills they can use as they grow older. A quality preschool curriculum includes activities that are effective in getting the students to concentrate longer. Young children have short attention spans and good teachers know the strategies to get them to focus on the lessons and activities of the moment.
Safe classroom environment
When looking for a preschool, it’s important to select the one with a safe and friendly classroom environment. All students must be within the view of the teacher. Visit the preschool and observe how safe their classroom environment is for children. How is the general cleanliness of the rooms and the outdoor area? Are there safety features installed such as covered electrical sockets? Are the toys safe enough to play with? Are there sharp edges or any potentially dangerous materials near the kids?
The teachers in the preschool you will be choosing should be qualified and experienced. When you visit the school, don’t hesitate to ask about their teacher’s training and experience in working with children. They should have a solid background in early childhood development. Good teachers do not only have academics as their focus, they should also have a deeper knowledge and understanding when it comes to a child’s holistic growth and development. They should see to it that they nurture a child’s growth in all important areas of their well being.
During your preschool visit, try to observe how the staff and teachers interact with the children and each other. Are they enthusiastic and motivating? Are they well prepared for the class? How do they handle conflicts and discipline inside the preschool classroom? Also check that the preschool program has a low teacher-student ratio so that your child gets the attention and care he needs.
A good preschool curriculum is one where the focus isn’t given on a child’s cognitive development alone; it should include plenty of play opportunities as well. Having fun and playtime is crucial to a child’s holistic growth. So send your child to a preschool that looks after their overall well being.
Finding the best preschool for your little one doesn’t have to be a daunting process when you use this guide. If you’re looking for a preschool in Atlanta that focuses on your child’s holistic growth, please consider ABC Early Learning Center.