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Choosing the Right Pre-K Program for your Child | The Arena Club

Posted by The Arena Club on September 15, 2017

Sending a child to preschool can be a big decision for parents, especially if they are sending a child for the first time.  Finding a great preschool can be overwhelming process, but here are key things to look for to help you make the best decision:

  1. Teacher-Student Relationship:  Interaction and close supervision are important at this age. Teachers should be busy and fully engaged with the children, guiding fun and educational activities.  A good teacher talks with children, makes them feel welcome and fosters their self-confidence.  Talk with the teacher about a typical days and ways in which he or she will keep you informed about your child’s progress.

  2. Qualified Caring Staff:  Pre-k Staff should have teachers that have a background in early childhood development as well as CPR and other emergency training.  The program should have a staff large enough to give your child the attention and care he or she needs.

  3. Discipline Strategies:  Ask the teacher his or her philosophy of discipline and make sure you agree with the discipline strategy.  It is important to discuss any any questions or concerns with the teacher ahead of time so you understand the expectations for your child.

  4. Curriculum:  Parents have different ideas about how their child should be taught.  Some parents look for programs with more play and social interaction and others look for more formal education.  It is important to evaluate the curriculum and consider how that falls in line with your philosophy.  The best preschools have daily schedules that include plenty of time for physical activity, quiet time or story time, group programs, socializing, crafts, individual activities and free time.Kids gardening outside

  5. Activities:  Ask about the activities the children will be involved in.  Find out if the program willprovide activities such as singing, story time and physical activity.  Will there be other activities such as swimming or gardening?  Are there field trips or community activities?

  6. Physical Environment:  Is the classroom colorful and inviting?  Are the age-appropriate toys and areas for pretend play?  Is the classroom clean?  Look for an atmosphere that suggests learning and fun.  Toys should be age appropriate and stimulate creative and imaginative play.

  7. Happy Parents & Children:  How do parents of previous pre-k graduates feel about the program?  Testimonials from other families are a great way to find out first-hand information about the program plus they provide reassurance of your choice.

  8. Your Gut Instinct:  Ultimately you should trust your own instincts.  How did you feel about being in the classroom yourself?  While visiting the school be sure to ask questions and take notes about what you see and how you feel so that you can choose a program that works best for you and your child.

    Learn More about Arena Club Pre-K programs!