Summer is always such a laid back time for so many of the people I know. It stays light out longer, the weather is warm, there are lots of fun vacations and activities planned, and overall, people just tend to be so much more relaxed. It’s great! The kids are off of school and the whole family has a bit more time to spend with each other. Who wants to think about a new school year, which technically, is already right around the corner? How can it be time already?!
Unfortunately, so many parents wait until it’s too late to register their child in a great preschool while they still have the availability. Fall enrollments have begun (and some have already ended due to being filled quickly)! That’s why it’s so important to take some time and start your fall preschool search now! What are some things that you should be looking for?
1. The Staff and Educational Philosophy
You definitely want to make sure you are comfortable with not only the director of the Preschool, but also the specific teachers who will be with your child every day. Are you looking for a specific type of curriculum and education for your child? Make sure it’s offered at the schools you are touring, as well, and discuss how the curriculum is enacted with the staff.
Communication is such a key ingredient in a successful preschool year. It may be the first time your child is in a solidified teaching environment. Make sure you are aware of how communication is handled if issues arise, or if you have questions on things happening during the year. Are regular updates on activities happening at the school sent home with the kids? Is email a preferred method of communication? Make sure your vision lives with the preschool.
3. The School Calendar
Make sure you are well aware of days off that have been scheduled throughout the year and make sure you’re aware of the policies for potential cancellations of school. You’ll also want to make sure you know how a sick child is handled and that you are on top of all of the guidelines that the school has for these types of issues. School vacations may or may not follow your district’s calendar, so make sure from the beginning you know the specific days off that your child will have over the year.
4. Parent Involvement
You’ll want to ensure that the level of parent involvement you are expecting is what the preschool offers. No matter what your interests, make sure to check on your preschool’s policy on parent involvement.
5. What’s Provided During the Day
Do the children nap? Are snacks and meals provided? You’ll want to make sure the answers to these questions fit with how you feel you want your child to be handled during the day. If you have a child who is allergic to things, you’ll want to make sure you are comfortable with how this will be handled in the Preschool. You’ll also want to make sure you are regularly updated on menu options to decide if nutritious and well-balanced meals are provided. If they aren’t provided, you’ll have to know how often you’ll be asked to bring food items in for the class or if you’ll be bringing things in daily for your child.
6. Does Your Child Have to be 100% Potty Trained?
Many Preschools will require this as a rule before starting your child in preschool, but make sure you know the specifics for how potty training is handled, specifically if your preschool starts before Age 4. Here at Precious Lambs, we work with the parents to help your child become successful at the potty training process. We will implement a potty training plan, just as long as the process has been initiated at home.
7. How is Discipline Handled?
This is a great thing to know, not only for you, but so your child has a clear sense of what is expected of him or her in the classroom. This is key with communication, as well, so both the preschool and parent are on the same page, should there be discipline issues during the year. Are reward systems used? Is a positive discipline philosophy being used so children clearly understand what is expected of them and why? These types of issues are great to have a firm grasp on and it’s also so helpful when the teachers and parents work together for the benefit of the child. Make sure you’re comfortable with any steps staff may take throughout the day to handle misguided behavior in the classroom.
In between all of the summer fun and activity schedules with the kids at home for the summer, take some time to secure a spot for your little one at preschool. Check out our website today at www.preciouslambschildcare.com in order to learn more and don’t hesitate to contact us for a tour. We just love this time of year as the anticipation grows and new little faces are getting ready to make their appearance at their first school. It’s such a special and magical time and we love being a part of it.