Preschool Philosophies: Pick the One Right for Your Child
Your child is starting preschool this fall? Then, you must be approaching this major milestone with clashing emotions. On one hand, you must be excited thinking about all the enjoyment your child is going to have and on the other hand, you must be little upset that your toddler is putting up his/her first step into a new world without your presence and support.
Picking the best Colorado Springs preschool for your child is easy, but with so many different terms and philosophies, selecting the best option can get a little overwhelming. With a little extra research and effort, you can choose the right path for your child’s first formal educational experience and lifetime of learning.
As you in search for the best preschool for your child? You will need to consider the school’s philosophy or approach, which will later help your child grow higher. Some of the most prevalent preschool philosophies to help you choose a school that meets your child’s needs are:
Traditional classroom holds a structured curriculum with specific objectives for the children. In these schools, children start learning from their early childhood with emphasis focussed on math, writing, letters, numbers, problem-solving, listening and more. In traditional environments, certainly there may be a free-choice period, but the emphasis is more given to formal instruction. You need to follow the school’s rules and regulations and may be required to follow a certain dress code. Kids who attend traditional schools are more task-oriented, but show less creativity, less initiative, less independence, and less-imaginative play.
No doubt the school focuses on academics, but the only distinguishing feature is that children get to learn at their own pace and build their own knowledge foundation. This brings into picture how classrooms are arranged, with children ages three, four and five all being in the same room. This exposes children to interact with children of other age groups and allows the older children to serve as role models for the younger ones. Here, the main interaction is between the child and the materials, not between the teacher and the child. At first, the teacher use to demonstrate the proper use of each set of materials and later the children work with them individually or in small groups. When they emerge from Montessori, children become more cooperative, organized, respectful of peers’ work, and able to work independently.
If you find a Waldorf school, you can completely trust and rely upon its findings that is true to the Waldorf philosophy, as each school and all of its teachers must be Waldorf certified. Academics are not emphasized in the early years, with emphasis mainly given on creative learning, cooking, singing, acting, reading, etc. In the early years, Waldorf schools don’t use textbooks. Children used to have their own main lesson books, which they fill up during the year, recording their experiences. Later, different textbooks, such as math and grammar are introduced for certain classes. The grading system is not followed until middle school and the teachers use to write detailed reports about each child’s development and progress.
There are various schools that use a mixture of these approaches. You would find many programs that draw on the best of Montessori, while the other, spending time on separation and socialization, things that Montessori don’t focus upon. Some traditional schools also include elements of progressive education, with teachers, allowing the academic work to evolve out of the kids’ interests.
With so many types of preschool philosophies, it would be better for you to visit each type of school and determine the exact program that you feel right for your child and family.