Is my child is ready for preschool?
As parents, we are excited to give our children as many experiences as we can. One milestone experience is going to preschool!
However, when is your child ready for preschool?
There is no checklist to complete, and not all children develop at the same pace. So how do we know?
It is also important to note that preschool is different from one-hour enrichment programmes. The enrichment programmes are often crammed with stimulating activities. Preschool experiences on the other hand are about social and emotional experiences, developmentally appropriate activities to suit each individual child, providing a nurturing and safe environment to learn and to keep trying, and the introduction to the notion that learning is fun!
In Singapore, most preschools take in children from 18months to 6 years old. Most children start preschool between 18 months to 2 years old. To know when your child is ready, here are some questions to ask yourself…
Is your child able to express himself to unfamiliar people
As parents we can read out child’s needs without them having to express themselves. At preschool on the other
hand, it is important that your child is able to get his basic needs and feelings across to teachers. This expression need not be verbal. It can be by pointing, through baby talk, or even facial expressions. What is important is that he is willing to attempt to communicate.
Is your child able to walk?
For most preschools in Singapore, being able to walk is a requirement. In a preshool classroom there will be other children around. It is important that your child is able to walk and keep steady – bumping around etc. during music time, walking while carrying items.
Does your child attempt independent activities at home?
These could be simple things such as wanting to set the table, or wanting to put their shoes on. These are little signs that your child is ready to start preschool.
Is your child curious about the world?
For children who can talk, this would include asking lots of questions. For children who are not talking yet, it could be wanting to touch things around them, or they like trying new things.
Is your child healthy?
Starting school will mean being with other children. Children who start school usually will catch bugs as they build their immune system. So yes, your child will fall ill. For the health of your child as well as the other children in the class, your child should be fit and healthy when he starts preschool.
Does your child ask to go to school?
An obvious indication… for children who can talk, does your child ask to go to school? Or if you have an older child, does your child indicate that they want to go to school just like their older sister or brother.
Mum and Dad – this one is for you! Are you ready for your child to attend preschool?
Your little baby is growing up and ready for school. It is important that you choose a preschool that is just right for you, somewhere you trust with your precious baby. It is also important that parents keep their anxieties in check when in front of their child, as children can pick up on this. You can find more on tips for starting preschool here.
“I am in preschool! I am not build to keep still, keep my hands to myself, take turns, be patient, stand in line or keep quiet all of the time. I need motion, novelty, adventure, and to engage the world with may whole body. Let me PLAY! Trust me, I am learning!” – Author unknown.