Knowing the character and nature of my daughter, I know a sit-down-flash-card-flashing course will drive us both NUTs. No doubt, it is supposed to nurture the genius out of my child but not on the expense of driving ME crazy first.
Being in a preschool industry, it's fun to take on the other side of the role. My job is to provide professional advice on early childhood and the programmes of my school. Right now, I get to enjoy being "served" and of course, like all rookie parents, I am just as nervous and excited about the whole new schooling experience.
Tips on How To Choose A Preschool Programme for Your Child
- Research the programmes that are available on the market
- Think about what suits your child's character and personality and current developmental needs. Do you want to develop his/her talents to the fullest potential? Or help her unleash and discover some hidden talents?
- Site Recee
However, no matter how rookie and nervous we are, we want to make sure we sound and ask smart questions on our first visit.
- What programmes are available for my (age) child?(This is so if you have not done any prior research.)
- What is the schedule of your xxx programme?
- Are there any availability? When can I start to enrol for my child?
- Is there a waiting list and how can I place my child on the waiting list?(if programme is full. boo hoo hoo...)
- Is this a drop off or parent accompanied programme? How many adults can accompany the child for the programme? Can we exchange in the midst of the programme?(Some schools allow exchange of parent during the programme. Some don't. Some allow both to attend, some only one. Seriously, I wouldn't be keen to attend a programme that is filled with adults instead of learning children. As the saying goes "Too many cooks spoil the soup". Parents who want to have fun with kids should probably go to those indoor playground instead of a school. In what ways, this does not make the programmes or school good or bad just because every schools have different philosophies. If you are curious, find out why and what they support.)
- What is your programme about and what areas of development it focuses on? (If you think you have done suffice research online and if time is in constraint, you can either skip this or just grab a brochure from them. Coz most of the time, you might just be hearing what you can read from the brochures.)
- Can I view the programme?(This is important as you want to see the general flow of the class, the atmosphere of the class and how the teachers conduct the class.)
- (Do you offer trial?(This is good if you are uncertain and is a person with high anxiety. You need to know what to expect and cannot stand surprises on your first visit. If you think viewing is not enough, you need to get a feel of it by participating with your child. Of course, nothing beats assessing the programme by experiencing it yourself. However more often than not, a day of trial programme is not sufficient to assess if the programme is suitable or how good or not the teachers are. It takes time to make fair observations. That is also why the standard probation period for a new job is 3 or even up to 6 months (for the more careful employers) in most companies. It works the same here. Anyway at the end of the day, you can always withdraw from the programme. It's not like you signed a 10-year contract. Always look on the bright side and make non-judgmental observations. Not SCRUTINISE and expect the unrealistic.)
- Other (money-related) mattersExamples are: administrative, programme and miscellaneous fees, refund/replacement/withdrawal policies, general terms and conditions which you will probably know when you register, sick child policy, programme advancements, any toilet facilities etc.
- What if my child cries while attending the programme? What if my child can't settle in the programme?(Toddlers are at the age they will cry for any thing they want or do not want. So seriously, it isn't a big deal. And the more they will cry when place in a new environment. So please be prepared. But of course out of graciousness, in the event that your child is in huge distress, just kindly excuse your child and youself during the programme but please do not make this time your last visit to the school. Otherwords, be persistant and understand it is normal and such reactions from your child is temporary. It's definitely nothing to worry about especially if you observe the crying frenzy stops whenever the class starts and he/she is in all smiles and laughters and participates enthusiatically in the programme very soon after.You have to persevere and be patient to work through your child's fear as they enter a new phrase of their life. An optimistic parent will bring about optimisim in your child.)
- Why is there no refund or make up and ABC school does?(As mentioned, every school has different philosophies and of course, terms and conditions. Respect it and not compare. If you like the school, enrol it. If not, move on. Besides, there's nothing much they can do if your child falls sick and it isn't the school fault either. Be rational and reasonable. And be educated: It's very common for yound children to fall sick during early childhood more so if your child tends to put his/her hands or things his/her hands land on into his/her mouth. Don't blame it on the school. This isn't the ONLY place your child goes to.)
|My baby looking all grown up here! Aww..how time flies.|
|Hatching a secret plan here.|