One of the most important decisions you make as a parent is choosing the right school for you and your family. We know; we have been there! It is really hard to pick the right school that will fit your family. You know when it’s time for your kiddo to go to school, but how do you pick the right one? One thing that I needed for a school was to know my kiddos learned through play. According to Professor Deborah Stipek, former Dean of the Graduate School of Education at Stanford University and an expert on early education, there are four basic criteria for selecting the best preschool ::
It’s important for me that the teachers are chosen specifically for the classroom they are assigned to. I need to know that even in my 3-year-old daughter’s classroom the teacher isn’t stuck in that classroom, but that they are qualified to be there and interested in that age group. Each teacher also needs to be certified in CPR and First Aid. Quality preschools, like the Little Sunshine’s Playhouse & Preschool in The Woodlands, goes beyond licensing requirements and provides ongoing learning opportunities for each teacher. They build the teachers classroom management skills up, including age-appropriate activities, effective discipline techniques, and positive communications.
Quality Classrooms and Security
Safety is one of my top priorities when I look at a school. At Little Sunshine’s Playhouse & Preschool, each parent receives a unique door code, which goes along with the official school pick up list verification. The classrooms also need to be kid friendly with low tables and activities for the little learners to reach. The playground also needs to be up to code and inspected regularly. Take a tour and look around at the overall happiness of the teachers and students. That is a great indicator that your little one will be loved and cared for.
Student Readiness Curriculum
We want our kids to leave preschool knowing they are ready for “big kid school”. One way we know they are ready is from the curriculum. An effective curriculum promotes learning in your child through fun and play, while encouraging them to develop independent skills, as well as enhancing their cognitive, social, and emotional skills. Look for a defined curriculum, structured lesson plans, and hands-on learning experiences catered to each individual. A quality school, like Little Sunshine’s Playhouse & Preschool, monitors your baby throughout their time at the school so that you can see where they started, if they are meeting each developmental milestone, and if they are truly ready for the next step. Knowing if your kiddo is ready for Kindergarten is one of the hardest choices you will make and the school should be able to help you.
Positive Teacher/Student Interactions
Your teacher is your first line of defense with your kid. How they interact is very important in their development. I’ve seen the love our teachers have for my loves. I need to know their hearts are with my hearts. It’s why we celebrate them during Teacher Appreciation Week. I also want my teachers to encourage parent involvement and regular communication. How am I supposed to know what I need to work on if I don’t know how my kids are doing? I also want to see how the teachers interact with each child. Are they really listening to the child? At Little Sunshine’s Playhouse & Preschool, each teacher gets on the child’s level and encourages the child to develop their language ability. One of the things I noticed with preschool is the importance for the teacher to take on parent-like roles, especially with the younger students. My kids, when younger, needed help potty training, wiping, kissing boo-boos, and help tying shoes, all things that are provided with a positive student teacher interaction.
Don’t worry, Momma. You will find the right school for your loves. It will make you happy and your kids happy. For truly well rounded program, check out Little Sunshine’s Playhouse & Preschool in The Woodlands and see for yourself first hand how much they love each child. Your child is important and learns the way only your child can. The talented staff has a unique ability to tap into each child’s learning abilities and teach through play.