Some people think that preschool for their toddlers is a must. Others think that they themselves can give their kids all the skills they need to have before they start kindergarten. Parents who have the time can indeed teach their kids the basics and if you have friends with kids the same age you can set up play dates so the kids can get together socially and learn all those much needed social skills. But what if you do not have the time or the friends with kids the same age?
Going to preschool does not mean going to simply play and sing nursery rhymes anymore, instead it is academic based and a lot of times, play based learning that allows your child to grow and learn in a safe and welcoming environment. They prepare the children for school by teaching them simple math and literacy skills, the names of the shapes, colors and alphabet letters, and let them learn by hands on activities that are thoroughly reviewed and tested to be safe and age specific for their students.
It is a structured and organized place that encourages social interaction, cooperation and sharing, and it also is a place that allows even the smallest of kids to make choices and learn to help themselves, all to promote independence and an “I can do it! ” attitude.
Preschool programs nurture curiosity and allows the imagination to run wild, all within the safe confines of the school program. Teachers encourage kids to play together and learn new skills and for many kids, this is the first time they have teachers other than their parents or grandparents to help them along.
The programs also encourage fine motor and gross motor skills to grow and develop, and work with the kids to grow their hand eye coordination and balance, all things needed for growing strong and learning well come elementary school and beyond.
Kids are like sponges, they soak up anything and everything since they are so curious about their world. Once they get that inspiration and confidence to go out and explore there is no holding them back. So is preschool right for you little one? Only you know the answer to that, but there is much research to back up allowing your toddler to attend before they start kindergarten, just to get the necessary skills in place before the ‘real learning’ and routing if school starts.