In the United States, children are required to attend school for so many years. However, there are also levels of optional school programs. For example, children do not have to go onto a college level program. They also do not have to attend preschool. Some children will never step foot into a school until they are kindergarten aged. This brings up the common parenting question, should I send my child to preschool and what are the benefits?
Slow transition into school
Children spend the first couple years of their life at home. They may be surrounded by their parents, siblings, or caretakers. They develop a routine that they get used to. They also become used to the people that they are surrounded by. When they are required to begin attending school, the transition can be difficult. The longer that you wait to begin this transition, the more difficult it becomes. Because preschool occurs at a younger age, it seems that children are better able to adjust. The daily preschool program becomes a part of their daily routine and they are better able to transition into a full time kindergarten or first grade program.
Children who are exposed to the benefits of preschool early on are more likely to succeed in their academics. Although parents tend to work with children on things like reading and writing in the home setting, it is usually not in a structured manner. When children are taught these lessons at the preschool level, they are more prepared for future academic lessons. While many children are getting used to the adjustment and transition into kindergarten, the child is able to focus on the lessons at hand.
Increased social opportunities
Children who spend more time at home do not learn necessary social skills until much later. They are unable to share things like communication, sharing, and effective argument. Choosing the best preschool is important in developing these social skills. When a child is enrolled into a preschool program, they are surrounded by children their own age. They are also at a critical age for language and personality development, allowing them to learn many beneficial social skills. The preschool setting also gives children more opportunities for social development than the kindergarten programs, which tend to be more focused on academic development.
Greater access to extra curricular activities
There are not many sport programs available for children younger than school age. Preschools, however, expose children to a wide variety of activities. Parents who care for their children at home may find it difficult to involve their children in these opportunities. Only about one in five homes have parks within a half mile, and about the same number have a fitness or recreation center within that distance. Private elementary schools with a focus on athletics and wellness can help kids stay active no matter what.
Studies also show that when children are introduced to sporting activities early on, they tend to remember these skills and enhance them easier. According to research by the American Camp Association (ACA), 63% of children who l earn new activities at camp will sustain an interest in those activities after camp is over. Choosing the best preschool can also introduce children to these sporting activities at a younger age.
How to find a preschool
If you have decided to enroll your child into preschool to experience all of benefits discussed, you are likely to have many options. You can choose between private and public schools. There are 30,861 private schools in the United States alone. While choosing the best preschool for your child does not require that it is a private program, this is surely an option. Evaluate the differences and keep the many benefits of preschool in mind. Choosing the best preschool for your child will provide them with advanced academic skills, increased social opportunities, and exposure to a variety of sporting and extra curricular activities.