Once you have decided to join your child to preschool, you are now one step ahead for getting into new relationship i.e. Parents-Teacher relationship. Like any other relationship of the world, this also needs to undergo proper observation before you go along. Here are few points which you must keep in mind while selecting the appropriate preschool for your toddler.
1. Know the aim of Preschool. Preschool education for younger children (age less than 3) shouldn’t be much formal. It should have less instruction and more interaction. Playgroup shouldn’t be about syllabus but about developing social behavior with the means of fun and enjoyment. Educating toddlers should be playful with basic learning. That is the real concept of playgroup. The goal of playschool should be more about knowing eachother than alphabets and numbers. Try to know about the method of education of the preschool. Know about 10 big facts of your kid’s tiny brain.
2. Check Reviews. Consult your friends and nearby parents about the preschools in which they send their kids. Note the positive and negative feedback given by them. Google for the reviews of the selected list of preschools.
3. Less travel time. Until your child reaches her first class, don’t make her travel for more than 2kms. It’s better if you find something good within your locality. If not, make sure not to go too far away. It should be within 1-2 kms from home to make it comfortable for pick and drop. Even if school provides transportation, it shouldn’t take more than 15 minutes to reach the destination.
4. See school in action. Spend sometime observing the school while it’s running. Try to meet the staff and principle to see how they work. Try to go along with someone who is related to school. You can go with your friend whose kid is already studying there to know about the status of school.
5. Look for suitable timings. It’s about quality not quantity. So, make sure it shouldn’t be more than 3 hours for your young child who is just 2-year-old. Less is always more in the case of toddlers. Ask the staff if they allow to free your kid after an hour in the beginning days. Let them gel up for little bit and then, you can increase the time limit. Even for kids more than 3 shouldn’t be in the school for more than 4-5 hours. Four hours are satisfactory in fact.
6. Keep in mind about hygiene. It might seems awkward but it is about your child health. When you get the appointment, ask for checking their toilets also. It should be a surprise visit. You should be able to know how clean their toilets are! If you are sending them to preschools that provide meal, check their canteen. Ask them to show their kitchen and know about their menu.
7. Have a look at their play-area. During preschools, the kids spend more time in play area. Check the safety of their play-area. Check if the surroundings are well baby proof to keep your child safe. See what all they have in their play area? It shouldn’t just covered with riders and slides. Check if they have different sections for different kind of interests in their activity room. Look if they have some specific area to scribble or paint or something related to music? Play-area should cover different interest to make sure that your kid gets the space to explore and enhance her talent. [Things to remember while you take your kid to swimming pool].
8. Go for 1:10 ratio class. The class for little kids shouldn’t have more than 10-12 students. As I said, less is always more for toddlers. It will help teacher to concentrate well on every child.
9. Observe the helping staff. Good Preschools have 1:1 teacher-helper ratio for each class. Little kids have many requirements and it’s not possible to do all the chores for each child. Also check how the helping staff behaves with kids. Neither of the staffs should instruct forcefully. Go for the preschool with happy working staff that interacts well with students and keep them happy.
10. Follow your sixth sense. In any case, it’s not possible to find the best school. You should always choose for a good school with proper staff and safe environment. You should check if the preschool is satisfying your demands for your child or not. Go with what your belief that nobody can know your child better than you. If you feel that your child will be happy in a particular preschool, just go for it.
It’s better to start the search little early to get ample time to observe the list of preschools. Be slow to observe but don’t be much tensed and confused. Just check in where you feel comfortable. Don’t look for very dashing or swanky schools. It should be more caring and cozy rather than high-class. And before anything else, Know if your child ready for getting into Preschool? If yes, then go with your decision.