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6 Important Questions To Ask When Choosing A Preschool

Choosing the right preschool is a challenge, and the choices can seem confusing and overwhelming.  Choose the right environment for your child to make sure they are getting the most out of the experience by asking a few important questions of each preschool you are considering.

1. What Is The Curriculum and Educational Philosophy?  There are several major educational philosophies in early childhood education, and each takes a different approach to how children are taught, the structure of the environment, and what is part of the curriculum.  The preschool should provide you with details of the curriculum, goals, and philosophy.  Some schools may blend different approaches, while others may strictly follow one system, which means you may find elements of Montessori approaches even in a school that doesn't call itself a Montessori school.

2. How Does the School Approach Discipline?  There are few issues that are hotter with parents than discipline, and you want to make sure that the school is handling problem behavior in a way that aligns with your beliefs.  Schools may use a rewards system for positive reinforcement or a color-coded card system among other approaches.  Ask the school to explain their approach thoroughly.

3. Is Potty Training Required, and How Are Bathroom Visits Handled?  Some schools will not accept students who are not fully potty trained and able to use the bathroom independently.  The bathrooms should be part of your tour and you should be able to see how accessible they are to your child.  Will a teacher accompany children to the bathrooms or are they expected to use the bathroom with no assistance?  The answers to these questions will help you to determine whether or not the school is right for your child's independence level.

4. Are Snacks or Meals Provided?  Each preschool has a different system for snacks, which is in part based on how long the school day will be.  Some schools have parents take turns providing a snack for the whole classroom, while others provide the snack as part of the tuition fees.  Some may ask children to bring their own snack individually.  This is especially important information if you are dealing with allergies or other special dietary requirements.

5. What Is the Educational Background of the Teachers?  Be sure to ask what kind of education the teachers have and how long they have been teaching.  While there's nothing wrong with a new teacher, you do want to make sure they've got the right education.  You not only want to see A CDA (Child Development Associate) as the basic credit, but also CPR and other credentials to keep your child safe.

6. How Much Playtime is Built Into the Day?  Playtime is crucial to children, and you want to make sure that your preschool offers the children enough free time to engage in play.  It's also important for children to have physical activity during the day.  Is there a recess time?  Will they play outside or is there a gymnasium?  Choose a school that takes play as seriously as they do education.

To learn more, contact a school like Sammamish Montessori School