Early childhood education is extremely important. Many parents are opting to send their children to a private preschool to ensure they get the right start. Nearly one third of children ages three or four attend a private preschool or day care center. Nearly a third of all private schools maintain a child to teacher ratio of 10 to one whereas only 10% of public schools can do the same thing.
If you are interested in sending your children to a private preschool there are some things you should consider. Here are some tips for choosing the best preschool:
- Make sure they emphasize the basics. One of the best indicators for how well a child will do in school later is how soon they learn to read. You should make sure the school you select pays a lot of attention to teaching basic reading and math skills. Studies have linked the reading level of a child at the end of the first grade to graduation rates and success in their careers later on. As the school about their philosophy on teaching these basics.
- Consider how play is handled. Play time can be very important for developing emotional, behavioral and motor skills. How well a child develops emotionally can be another indicator of how well they will do in future endeavors. While it may seem that if the private preschool you pick is really serious about teaching the ABCs and 123s that they will slack a little on play time but a good private preschool can juggle both. Play time is also when children can exercise their imagination and that will serve them well later in life. Kids who can get exercise are healthier physically, mentally and emotionally.
- Do the children have any say in their daily activities? New research has shown a correlation between giving a child the chance to make choices early in life and their social and life outcomes later. You can look over the planned schedule and see if this kind of thing is built into their day or if the teachers just tell the kids what they are going to do without getting input from the students. Ask the teacher if you are not sure.
- How do the teachers interact with their students? How nurturing are the teachers? It is really critical that they make the classroom a positive place for the students. This is the first time they will be away from the family for extended periods of time and can shape the way they view school for the rest of the time they are in it.
- Is the school?s approach to social and emotional issues at all like yours? Ask about how they handle various situations and think about what you would do in those circumstances. You do not want to send your children to a school with a completely different take on how to handle these situations than you do because maintaining consistency is important for young children.
Every day, five million children in the United States head off to a prekindergarten program. These are great to teach children the basics and help guide their socialization. If you do your research in finding a good preschool, you will feel much better about the process.