It’s important to start your child’s education off on the right foot. In order to give kids a one-up on their future, many parents send their children to preschool. There are a variety of quality educational institutions across the country who provide younger children an opportunity to learn and grow at earlier ages.
If you’re planning on enrolling your children in preschool, you’ll need to prepare them beforehand. Here are a few tips on how you can do just that.
Read to Them
With so many educational shows on today, sometimes it’s nice to plop the little one down in front of a multicolored dinosaur who sings about sharing, caring, and the ABCs. While that may be an effective way to introduce some topics to your child, make sure you set aside some time each night to read to them.
As you read to your child nightly, you will foster an environment where their imagination can grow. This will help them develop abstract thinking skills, a deeper vocabulary, and stronger listening skills. And as your child sees you reading, they will develop a desire to learn to read as well.
You can check books out from your local library, purchase them at your neighborhood bookstore, or download them from the Internet. With so books covering almost every topic imaginable, you’ll have an easy time finding one your child will enjoy.
Set a Schedule
Children are creatures of habit, which is why setting a schedule for them is imperative. Children’s most basic pattern is their sleep schedule. Your child should wake up and fall asleep around the same time every day. This will help them behave properly while they are awake.
It’s likely that your child’s sleep schedule is in sync with your own. If it is, and your schedule aligns with that of the preschool, then your child should have little trouble getting out of bed and going to school.
If these two schedules differ for any reason, spend a few days before preschool begins adjusting them to a new pattern. This will help solidify their routine once preschool begins.
Increase Social Interactions
Preschool is a great time for your child to develop social skills. They will interact with strangers from different social, religious, and economic groups. Your child will learn to share, communicate, express their emotions, and work and play with others. These skills will help them as they grow in maturity.
Children with limited social experience may benefit from enrollment in pre-curricular classes. Community centers and gyms offer a variety of stimulating activities targeted at helping children interact. Here are a few ideas of classes you can enroll your child in:
Expand their Responsibilities
Before your child starts preschool, it’s a good idea if to give them a few more responsibilities. Start by doing small things. Chores are just one way to help children develop independence. Have them clear away plates and utensils after a meal, or pick up their toys before bedtime.
As your children grow, increase the difficulty of their tasks.
Visit a Classroom
As part of your preschool preparation, it may pay to spend some time in a classroom. This will help your child develop expectations of what to expect in the classroom. It may also give them a chance to meet potential classmates and start to develop lasting social connections. And as a parent, it will give you an opportunity to get to know the teacher, and the way the teacher manages the classroom.
Once you have spent some time in a classroom, spend some time playing school when you get home. Reinforce proper behaviors during a fun play session with your kid. Take turns playing the student and the teacher. As a student, model proper behavior. As a teacher, demonstrate what your child can expect in a classroom.
Pay close attention to how your child acts during this time. This will give you an insight into their mind, and can help you curb negative behaviors before they show up in class.
The last thing you need to do before you little one goes off to preschool is prepare yourself. If you’re used to spending most of your day caring your child, sending them off to school can cause a great deal of emotional stress. Prepare to feel separation anxiety as you drop your baby off for the first time.
On that first day, give yourself plenty of time to arrive at school early. Once your child settles in, leave. This may sound harsh, but the longer you stay, the more difficult it will be to go. And after the minutes have ticked by and it’s time to pick up your little one, stay positive.
Ask questions about how their day went. Listen intently to the things they say. As you show interest in their preschool activities, their interest will increase.
Preschool provides children with a fun way explore their world in a safe, nurturing environment. If you are looking to start your child’s education off on the right foot, find a qualified institution in your area.