Knowing what to look for in a preschool is a big question that parents face as they prepare to send their kids off on the start of their educational journey. We uncovered some tell-tale signs of a high-quality program so you’ll know exactly the right classroom for your children.
Preschool is not a mandatory grade, but it has long been popular with parents seeking more than just child care in the years before public school begins. Start by considering your family’s needs and budget. Do you need a full-day preschool program with extended care, or is a half-day preschool program sufficient? Are you looking for a program with a particular educational philosophy? Would your child be most successful in a center or a small home setting? Once you’ve articulated your wish list, you’re ready to start actively looking.
On your visit, you should do your best not to be overly charmed by the miniature scale of classroom furniture and darling art projects. Look for indicators of a preschool with organized routines, a logical classroom lay-out, and teachers and children who all appear to be happy to be there. If teachers seem really busy or frazzled, something’s off. If there are children crying or fighting over toys, then something isn’t working in the class. See if the school’s physical space is set up well for little children, with sinks and bathrooms in a convenient place, not, for example, down a public hallway.