Finding the right preschool to promote grade school readiness in your children can be a stressful endeavor. There are certain things to look for in a preschool like parental involvement and preschool education activities and these differ by preschool so you really have to look into them. But, where to start? With a list, of course! Lists make daunting tasks seem so much more achievable. With that in mind, here are some steps for narrowing down the type of school that you want your child to go to.
- Research the requirements for preschool.
Start with finding out what exactly your child is going to need to have accomplished before they can get into preschool. Different preschools will have different standards but across the board, most require that your child be potty trained before he starts preschool. Other than that, there may be a few standards for the children depending on the school. There might also be different requirements depending on whether the preschool is private or public. If you don’t agree with the requirements of one or more of the schools, then you can cross them off your list and this will help you to narrow things down a little bit. Make sure they promote what is important to you. For example, if parental involvement is essential to you, find preschools that will welcome you dropping by at any time or that give out weekly reports.
- Find out the difference between private and public.
That is, besides the price. If you can’t afford the cost of private preschool then that decision as been made for you. But, don’t feel bad. While private preschool has smaller class sizes and is better able to focus on the children one on one, if you find a good preschool that uses the preschool education activities to their benefit, they will probably do exactly the same thing, only on a larger scale. However, if private preschool is something that you are considering because of their preschool education activities or whatever the reason might be, then your options might be a little wider.
- Realize what you don’t like.
Sometimes it’s easier to figure out what you don’t want then to know what you do want. You know that you don’t want your child just left to themselves to figure out what to do all day. Preschool age children need to be engaged in preschool education activities and be learning and gleaning. While there are a lot of things they can learn just be watching or playing by themselves, this is something that they could do at home. You want them in preschool to get them ready for grade school and to be a little ahead of the curve if possible. If you find a preschool that believes in the power of individual play, while that’s great for someone else, you might want to cross them off the list.
- Find out what preschools are in your district
This could well be the determining factor when it comes to preschools for your kid. You don’t want to have to drive an hour there and an hour back to have your child stay in preschool for three hours a day. It would seem like a waste of time unless your child is coming home from school with giant amounts of new information daily. However, even that is not a great idea because the children will get overloaded and burnt out pretty quickly and not be able to focus anymore. Look up the reviews and reputation of the preschools in your area to see what kinds of schools they are.
- Narrow it down to four preschools and visit.
Use the above tips to narrow down your list to three or four potentials and then go in person to visit the school and meet the teacher than runs the preschool. If you really like him or her then you could request to meet the other teachers and ask all of the questions that you want. Don’t be afraid to ask the hard questions about policy and what they would do in certain situations. A good preschool owner will have the answer to all of your questions because he or she will understand how important their job is.