3 hints for finding a preschool for your toddler

As you search for the right preschool for your toddler, try to choose one that fully prepares your child for a smooth transition to kindergarten. Here are 3 suggestions for what to look for in a good preschool program.

3 hints for finding a preschool for your toddler

1. Choose a preschool program that prepares your child academically

Your child will have an easier time adjusting to kindergarten if the preschool you select offers a rigorous and engaging curriculum. The right preschool provides a good academic foundation by teaching children the following skills:

  • Recognizing shapes
  • Identifying numerals up to 10
  • Speaking in complete sentences
  • Recognizing rhyming words
  • Understanding contrasting words (large/small, fast/slow and so on)
  • Identifying basic colours
  • Sorting objects by shape, size and colour
  • Identifying the sounds made by most letters

Keep in mind that every child develops at a different pace, so some children may exceed these basic academic skills before entering kindergarten.

2. Choose a preschool that enforces social and classroom etiquette

Many social skills are learned through observation and experience. All the same, your child's preschool should teach and reinforce basic rules of classroom etiquette, such as:

  • Recognizing and respecting figures of authority
  • Listening to and following basic instructions
  • Sharing toys and supplies
  • Participating in group discussions and activities
  • Taking turns and playing well with peers
  • Seeking assistance from teachers for conflict resolution
  • Quietly listening to a story for at least 10 minutes

A good preschool prepares your child for everyday life in kindergarten by teaching and encouraging these basic classroom etiquette skills.

3. Choose a preschool that helps develop independent motor skills

Select a preschool that encourages the development of basic motor skills through classroom and playtime activities. The types of motor skills that will facilitate a smooth transition to kindergarten include:

  • Properly holding and cutting with scissors
  • Correctly grasping and using writing tools (pencils, crayons and so on)
  • Putting together a seven-piece puzzle
  • Pronouncing words correctly
  • Stacking blocks
  • Climbing on playground equipment
  • Bouncing, throwing and catching a ball
  • Confidently using clothing fasteners (zippers, buttons and so on)
  • Balancing on one foot
  • Threading beads on a string

While a good preschool program introduces and builds these age-appropriate skills, it is also important to reinforce them at home. For example, if your child is never required to zip their own jacket at home, they may have a tougher time doing it independently in preschool.

Preschool can lay the foundation for your child's educational experiences later in life, so it is worth taking the time to find a preschool program that you are happy with.

The material on this website is provided for entertainment, informational and educational purposes only and should never act as a substitute to the advice of an applicable professional. Use of this website is subject to our terms of use and privacy policy.
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