Preschool is where your child is going to have their first experience of education. It’s going to shape their little minds and teach them important lessons about the world around them. Therefore, if you want to ensure they get the best start in life, choosing the right preschool is essential.
There are a lot of factors to consider when looking for the best preschool for your child. So, to help make your decision that little bit easier, below you’ll discover some top tips to help you choose the best preschool.
Consider The Practicalities
One of the first things you’ll need to do is work out the practicalities. This means, figuring out how close the preschool needs to be to your home, how much you can afford and what hours the preschool is open. Do they fit in with your schedule and preferences?
Start looking at preschools which match your requirements, then narrow down to around three options.
Watch The Staff In Action
It’s tough to know whether or not a preschool is right for your child unless you actually see it in action. A good preschool will allow you to visit and watch the staff for a little while. You’ll get to see how they interact with the children and what kind of approach they have to teaching.
By seeing them in action, you’ll have a good idea of whether or not they will be good with your own child.
Ask For Personal Recommendations
One of the best ways to find a good preschool is to ask for personal recommendations. Is there a school that your friends, family or work colleagues recommend? When a preschool comes with a recommendation, you know it’s going to be a good one!
However, it’s still worth paying it a visit and following the other tips on this list as just because a preschool is right for some children, it doesn’t necessarily mean it will be right for yours.
Think About Your Child’s Needs
Every child is different, and they develop at different paces. Therefore, you’ll want to double check the preschool you’re considering is suitable for your child’s needs. For example, will your child need to be potty trained? If they do and yours isn’t, it could lead to a lot of stress!
You will especially want to be extra-vigilant choosing the right preschool if your child has special needs. Not all preschools are equipped for children with disabilities or unique requirements.
Understand The Guidelines That Are In Place
Before enrolling your little one into a preschool, you’ll want to double check what kind of guidelines are in place. What are the behavior policies and what will be expected of you as a parent? Understanding all of the rules that are in place will help you to ensure it’s the right school for you and your child.
How Much Time Will The Children Spend Playing?
At this age, children need to be allowed to just be kids. While you’ll obviously want them to learn something at the preschool, you’ll also want to know they get plenty of play time too. Ask how much time children spend playing and what type of play activities they have access too.
Ideally, the preschool will provide a range of activities, including outdoor play opportunities. The more varied the play activities are, the better it will be for your child’s development.
Pay Attention To Teacher Turnover
This can be a little tricky to figure out. However, if you can see what the teacher turnover is like, you’ll be able to determine how good the school is. If there’s a high turnover of staff, it should be viewed as a red flag. The more teachers who leave, the more likely it is that the preschool isn’t a great place to work. If it isn’t a great place to work, it’s not going to be a great place for your child to be.
Check The Visitation Policy
Finally, you’ll want to check out the visitation policy at the preschool. Will you be able to pop in and visit your child whenever you want to? As the children are still quite young, you may wish to select a preschool that lets you stop by if you want to. If they don’t, you might want to look for one that does, if only for peace of mind.
These are some of the most important things to consider and look out for when you’re choosing a preschool for your little one. Remember, it’s an important decision you’re making so never just rush into it. Once you have found a preschool you like, don’t forget to register your child as far in advance as you can. Some preschools, especially the good ones, have long waiting lists so if you leave it too late, you could end up disappointed.