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Choosing the Right Preschool for Your Child

Singapore has been heralded as one of the best countries with an excellent education system. Everyone puts so much importance and emphasis on education it is very evident with the number of childcare centers. Parents want their children to start learning at a young age and do everything they can to support them. But with so many schools around, it can also be a tedious task to select the best one for your child to start in a long way to their academic journey.

Selecting the best preschool for your child can be very intense indeed, especially if there are a lot to choose from and parents are conflicted between local and international preschools. However, at the end of the day, the best decision will be whatever fits your child the best. And yet, preschools may be the first step in the process of getting your child started in their academic journey and it also encourages your child to have a strong sense of identity. This means that choosing the preschool for them should not be taken lightly either.

Is preschool Important?

As we have mentioned in our previous article, childhood education has an important role in developing a child’s cognitive abilities. Not only that but it also shapes one’s behaviors such as following simple instructions and rules, getting along with their peers, sharing with their peers, and even putting things back to their place. These skills may seem mundane when they are still young but these are the exact values and social skills that will help them in the future and throughout their life.

Preschools are the place children develop their skills whether social, physical and motor, and many more before they are to join the next level in their education. Preschool teachers also help students grasp language skills more by asking them questions and introducing new vocabulary to them.

What to consider when choosing a preschool

The best preschool is the one that feels right for your child. It is the one that will best suit them and will make them feel comfortable with learning. However, there are also some other factors that parents should look into when choosing the preschool for their child.

1. Cost and budget

The cost of how much you’re willing to pay every month should be a consideration. There’s a difference in pricing when it comes to private and government preschools and most parents want to know the school fees before they would enroll their child in the institution. Keep in mind though that preschool is only the first step for your child and they still have a long road ahead of them academic-wise.

2. Location

The cost of how much you’re willing to pay every month should be a consideration. There’s a difference in pricing when it comes to private and government preschools and most parents want to know the school fees before they would enroll their child in the institution. Keep in mind though that preschool is only the first step for your child and they still have a long road ahead of them academic-wise.

3. Student and teacher ratio

How many students will there be per class? This is also important to know before enrolling your child in a preschool. There is a guideline with regards to the student-teacher ratio in childcare centers in Singapore, however, also research on the advantage and disadvantages of bigger or smaller class sizes to help you set your own expectations and what’s best for your child.

4. School hours and curriculum

Parents should also consider if they want to enroll their child in a full-day or half-day program. Some preschools in Singapore though only offer full-day programs so it’s best to weigh and look into the programs offered by the preschool and what will work best for your child and you as well. The same thing also applies to the education program the preschool offers; parents can opt to choose specifics such as Montessori. However, many others opt for adjustable playing and learning. It’s also best to choose the one program that your child can easily adjust to and blend in comfortably.

5. School facilities

The school’s environment is also a very important factor to consider. Is the school well-equipped with facilities to encourage creative learning? Is it clean and safe for children to play and run in? Will there be cleaners to sanitize the areas, and how often will the areas be sanitized? These are only some of the questions that will help parents in determining the best for their child.

Tips for choosing a preschool for your child

As well as the factors parents should consider in choosing a preschool, here are also some tips that may help you narrow down the search or just make things a little bit easier for you

1. Visit preschools in person (if possible)

Calling the administration or going through their website and social media isn’t the same as seeing the school in person. It will also not provide you with all the information you need, or even didn’t know yet you may need. Some questions may pop in at the moment for you that you may not have thought of when you are looking into their website.

With Covid-19 restrictions, preschools have opted for a virtual tour around their school. However, if the school administration permits you to enter the premises in person, take the opportunity to understand the environment better. In a tour, you will be able to see the operations of the school as it is and will be able to feel the atmosphere it gives off as well. Do the children respond to their teachers well? Are they interactive? How do the teachers respond to their students as well? Do they answer their questions properly and openly?

As well as seeing the workings of the school, parents will also be able to see the state of the school. You can look out for the cleanliness of the place, especially more so to be considered in this pandemic. Parents will also be able to see if they have all the facilities that will help make their children’s stay comfortable such as a nap area or a play area. They will also be able to inspect whether the toilets are clean, which should be a top consideration. A clean environment helps and plays a vital role in the development of children and seeing it firsthand will help parents in choosing whether the preschool will fit their child.

2. Put your child’s needs first

Select the preschool that best fits your child. As every child is different, some preschools may handle different cases better than others. In these situations, putting your child’s needs first will be the tipping point in choosing the preschool. If your child has special learning needs, it’s also best to inform the school. This will help them decide whether to admit your child or not. If your child has delayed development, choosing a preschool with staff trained to cater to their needs is also a must. You will want your child to receive the best care possible and their needs should come first before all other considerations.

3. Look for positive and caring school staff

Children who have more caring and positive teachers have a more advanced development. But it shouldn’t just stop with teachers. Children should be surrounded by people that care about their well-being. Trusting relationships will influence how they relate with others. When the school staff show positivity, parents will be at ease knowing their children are in good hands.

4. Teachers with required qualifications

Children who have more caring and positive teachers have a more advanced development. But it shouldn’t just stop with teachers. Children should be surrounded by people that care about their well-being. Trusting relationships will influence how they relate with others. When the school staff show positivity, parents will be at ease knowing their children are in good hands.

5. Engaging teaching

Visiting the school firsthand will give you the impression of how the teachers interact with the children during lessons. However, this will also be more achievable by creating a friendly relationship with your child’s teacher. Parents and teachers have the same goal – it’s to give your child the best learning experience. By being friendly with your child’s teacher, it will help you understand your child better and also you will be able to ask the teacher questions regarding how they conduct their lessons and how your child responds in class.

In addition, you’ll also be able to ask the teacher the things you can do at home that can help your child or if there is anything you should know. You can also communicate with your child’s teacher through emails or messaging apps. Just make sure you are asking for updates during appropriate times and avoid nagging.

6. Enough time for physical activities

Physical activities enhance children’s early development and stimulate brain growth. Free play allows them to expand their social competences and promotes social growth. They will also be able to concentrate better in school and also sleep better. Enough playtime will also promote them to learn to interact with other children and maintain a healthy body and develop their muscles and bones.

Carelle

Carelle

Carelle is a teacher who has been through the ups and downs of the teacher and learner life. She wishes for every learner to gain educational satisfaction that will help embody the people they want to be in the future.

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