If you are the parent of a young child, you have probably looked into many options for different preschools when the time is right. If you are looking for a more progressive learning option, here are some things to seek.
Child-Led Curriculum Can Foster Learning
Many progressive preschools seek to remove teacher-led classes and instead opt to let the children guide their learning. The reasoning for this shift from traditional education is that children are all unique in their learning styles, and education is often more effective when approached naturally. The benefits of a child-led learning environment, especially in preschool, are numerous and can help foster better learning in later years. Because children are being taught to take charge of their learning, progressive preschools may better encourage independent thinking, help promote healthy creativity and set children up to be more well-rounded adults.
Play-Based Learning Focuses On Interactions
Progressive preschools also tend to focus more on play-based learning, viewing play as the work of children. Because children at play are more imaginative and curious, they are engaged in their learning and learn how to navigate social situations. Teachers in this setting play a more relaxed role, guiding students as needed and facilitating healthy interactions between children. Typically, teachers will seek to set up play environments to foster active learning, such as sensory experiences creative craft projects and instill some boundaries to ensure a safe, effective learning process.
Parental Involvement Is the Key To Learning
While finding a progressive preschool is a significant step that can lead to a voracious learner in the future, being involved in your child’s learning is crucial. Many preschools that value child-led learning also encourage active parental involvement. Learning doesn’t stop when your child leaves school, so you should learn about the methods your preschool uses in class and seek to incorporate those at home. If you have a strict, non-flexible home environment that directly opposes what your child has been taught at school, you can hamper learning and confuse your child. Involvement in your child’s education can mean reading at night, engaging in imaginative play and giving your child some free range to get messy while guiding them to think expansively about their interactions with the world.
If you seek a more progressive preschool experience for your child, you will want to learn about different models yourself. This list gives you a jumping-off point for some concepts to look for when seeking a child-first preschool.