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How to Select the Best Preschool for Your Child

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Would Do you like to give your child a head start in Singapore’s intensely competitive education system?  Early childhood experts say preschool is beneficial for developing socialization skills, academic basics, and physical abilities in a child. It is understandable to worry about having your young one out of your hands, but there are several good choices for preschool education in Singapore. Here is how you can get a good one.

Consider what You and Your Child Need

What do you want for your child? Many parents are eager for their child to get immersed in academics right away. While it is not wrong, it is important to keep in mind that your child has a long learning period ahead, until her/his twenties.  At that very young age, your child needs to know how to socialize and develop a personality.

When and how is your child happiest?  Is it when solving puzzles by herself or when jumping hoops with other children?  Assess different school curriculums to see if they match with what your child needs.

How is your career or business schedule?  You should pick a preschool that fits your schedule, or that conveniently gloves into your start and end of the day. This is a top priority if you are the primary caregiver of your child because it ensures the child is under care at all times.

Consider the Preschool Curriculum and Teaching Methods

What is your child learning and how are they learning it?  This is very important because, at this stage, a child is much like a clean slate. Whatever the experiences and skills they learn stick very well.  Curriculums that are heavy on academics have lots of worksheets to fill.  Play-based curriculums teach by gamification. 

Look for a curriculum that responds to your child’s needs when selecting preschool in Singapore. It should expose the child to a range of learning experiences, help build relationships, and instill basics in language. The Lorna Whiston preschool curriculum, for example, includes  Art and Craft, Stories and Rhymes, drama, culture classes, language classes, and physical exercises. Such a curriculum offers the variety that a child needs at that growing age.

Ask About the Teachers

It is easy to get impressed by a school’s facilities and forget the most important element; the teacher. Your child’s learning progress is in the hands of the teacher. You need to make sure that this is a capable professional.

Teachers should have the requisite certifications and accreditation. Preschool Singapore certification is done by the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA).  They should also have accreditation from the Singapore Pre-school Accreditation Framework (SPARK).

It helps to speak to the teachers. How motivated are they in their work?  Are the parents themselves? What are their general behavior and attitude towards the children?  A personal talk can help you pick hidden signals if you are keen enough.

What is the pupil to teacher ratio? Smaller classes and a low pupil to teacher ratio translate to more personal attention and teacher contact for your child. The teacher can pick up any learning difficulties that may need remedying early enough.

Assess the School Facilities

Education experts say a child’s learning environment is the ‘third teacher.’ The classroom space and set up, together with learning aids, have a big impact on a child’s learning. You should see an uncluttered space that is adequate for movement, interaction, and play. 

Physical play facilities are mandatory for any competent pre-school. You should see a provision for physical exercises and games. There should be a playground and play things like balls, hula-hoops, and other appropriate toys.

You should assess the safety and hygiene of the school’s facilities.  Are there sanitation facilities including handwashing sites and are the children taught how to use them? Is the furniture, play toys, and learning aids child-safe?

Ask About Disciplinary Procedures

A growing child’s behavior must be molded both at home and at school. Most parents have homegrown disciplinary procedures. It is necessary to hear how your child’s discipline will be nurtured away from home. Assess whether the school’s disciplinary measures are effective and meet your expectations.

How does the school handle conflict resolution among children?  Growing children will often quarrel and squabble over petty things. Serious conflicts can take the form of bullying.  It is important to hear from the school management and the teacher on these issues.

Consider the school’s location

How far is the school from your home and place of work? Is it convenient for you to drop the child on the way to work and pick him/her up quickly if the need arises? Your child should be easily reachable at all times, either by you or someone in the family.

Listen to reviews and reputation

How reputable is the school? Most parents follow friends’ recommendations, which works out well most times. But it is crucial to make your own due diligence checks.

Preschool attendance is beneficial for a child. A good preschool will play a big positive role in your child’s learning process. Use the tips above to pick a good preschool and your child’s development will be in safe hands.

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