As of 2021, roughly 88% of 5-year-olds attend preschool, and New Jersey, Massachusetts, and Colorado are among the top-ranking states in terms of attendance. Colorado is also home to some of the country’s highest quality and most exciting preschools, and if you reside here, you might have trouble picking one out of the many options.
Preschool is the start of your child’s educational journey – which can significantly impact their future. They learn so much, from the basics of communication and socialization to the foundation of reading and writing. Moreover, it’s an excellent time to explore their interests, build self-confidence, develop essential life skills, and discover what makes them unique.
As a parent, you want to ensure your child is in the right environment for these crucial developmental stages. The key to a successful preschool experience is finding the perfect place that aligns with your values and beliefs while providing your child with a safe and stimulating learning environment.
On that note, here are seven things to consider when researching potential preschools.
Does the school use an evidence-based and age-appropriate curriculum? Is it designed to meet the individual needs of each child? Does it encourage creativity, problem-solving and social interaction?
The curriculum should stimulate the child’s curiosity and promote learning. The best approach to learning for young children is play-based. Educators create a safe, nurturing environment to allow children to explore and discover new ideas without feeling overwhelmed. If you reside in Boulder, Colorado, you can find Treehouse Learning to be the best play-based preschool in the Boulder area. So enroll your child here and get ready to watch their confidence, social relationships, and cognitive development soar!
Since preschool is likely the first learning experience in a child’s life, the environment must be designed to cultivate creativity. A safe, secure, and stimulating environment is vital to create a positive learning experience.
Look out for preschools with spacious classrooms that provide plenty of room for creative play and exploration. Focus on the quality and variety of toys, art materials, books, and games to ensure your child has ample opportunity to learn, explore and discover. Take a day to visit the preschool and observe its environment to ensure it is conducive to a positive learning atmosphere.
Location is also a critical factor in choosing a preschool. It’s best to pick one close to home or work so you can quickly drop off and pick up your child. It will also make it easier for you to visit the school and stay up-to-date with your child’s progress.
Make sure the school has a pleasant and safe neighborhood, plenty of parking, and is easily accessible. The surrounding environment should be suitable for young children, with plenty of outdoor play areas and secure playgrounds to take your little one out for some fresh air and exercise after class and reinforce what they’ve learned in the classroom.
Facility safety & comfort
Safety and comfort are essential for a successful preschool experience. Ensure the preschool is well-equipped with safety features, such as fire extinguishers, smoke detectors, and safety-proofed electrical outlets. Look for secure entrances and exits so your child can’t wander outside unnoticed. Make sure the furniture is comfortable and sized appropriately for children.
Ensure classrooms are brightly lit with plenty of windows and enough ventilation to keep the air fresh and odor-free. Keep an eye out for signs of overcrowding, too – your child should have ample space to move around safely in the classroom. Finally, ask about the cleanliness of the premises, and observe how they handle meals and snacks.
You don’t want just anyone teaching your child. Ask questions about the teachers’ qualifications and experiences in the field of education. A quality school will have highly qualified staff members who have shown their commitment to the profession through hard work and dedication. Determine whether they have special certifications and advanced degrees and how long they have been teaching.
You can also talk to parents whose children attend the school to get feedback on the teaching staff. They can provide an inside perspective on how the staff interacts with students and whether their children’s needs are being met. Knowing that the teachers are experts in their fields and passionate about inspiring students can make all the difference when choosing a preschool.
At the heart of a great preschool facility lies parent involvement. A quality program will actively encourage and welcome parents in their child’s education and will provide a variety of ways for them to get involved.
A strong relationship between the teaching staff and parents will ensure that your child’s needs are being met both in and out of the classroom. Ask the school about ways you can be involved, such as open houses, parent-teacher conferences, special events, and volunteer opportunities. Additionally, inquire about their communication methods to keep parents informed of their children’s progress and everyday activities.
Does the preschool look after the students’ overall well-being? Is the lunch program nutritious and balanced? Are there enough staff members to ensure that each student is supervised closely to prevent accidents or injuries?
Most parents often overlook such details when selecting a preschool, but they’re essential to ensure the safety of your little one. It also assures you that your child is in the care of knowledgeable professionals committed to providing positive and nurturing learning experiences.
Preschool isn’t just a place for your child to play and make friends; it’s also their first experience with formal education. That’s why it’s essential to make sure you’re choosing a quality preschool that will provide your child with the best possible start. Look into staff qualifications, facility safety and comfort, school environment, curriculum, and activities offered. Make sure to see if parent involvement is encouraged and if the facility provides general childcare. Review the options thoroughly and trust your instincts- you’ll be sure to find a preschool that will provide the perfect environment for your child to grow, learn, and thrive!