Preschools have increased in popularity in recent years as more and more parents realize its importance in early development. Choosing a preschool is not always an easy task for parents – there are so many to choose and so many things to consider! We know this well enough, so here are our top 5 things to consider when choosing a preschool. We’ve also accumulated our top questions to ask during a school tour to get to the information that matters.
1. Your own priorities
Contemplate and list out your priorities for a school. Is it location? Is it teaching philosophy? Is it reputation? Is it language? There are no right answers, but this should help narrow down your list significantly.
- What languages do you teach?
- What does a typical class look like?
- Where do your students end up for primary school?
2. Your child’s needs
Spend some time considering what is best for your child. What is their ‘learning style’? What are they interested in? How do they react to new environments? At Tutor Time, we’re very proud of our low student-to-teacher ratio (8:1) and tailored curriculums, so that our teachers can really find out what each student needs. Remember to ask these questions at your school tour:
- What is the student-to-teacher ratio?
- What is your teaching philosophy?
- How do you ensure my child’s needs are met?
Your child’s teacher will become their role model. If you have the chance, schedule a school tour and observe the teachers at work. Watch how they interact with the children and how they control the classroom. Hopefully, you see a teacher that is warm and enthusiastic about teaching young children. Remember to ask these questions at your school tour:
- Are your teachers qualified?
- Are your teachers licensed?
- How much experience do your teachers have teaching young children?
4. The environment
Top tier schools will spend a considerable amount of time planning and building an environment that is safe, warm, and conducive to learning. There are entire educational philosophies built around the learning environment, so it’s worth seeing it first-hand. At your school tour, remember to ask these questions:
- Does your campus meet all the safety requirements set by the EDB?
- Does your campus meet the requirements set by the Social Welfare Department?
- Does your campus have proper air ventilation systems?
- What is your cleaning and hygiene routine?
5. Technology and innovation
As the world continues to change, so does early childhood education. It is important that schools continue to innovate and adapt to changing norms and standards. Children nowadays are growing up in a digital era, and it is important that we expose this to them in an age-appropriate and supervised manner. Remember to ask these questions at your school tour:
- What kind of technology do you use in class/in school?
- How will you prepare my child to be technologically literate?
- How often do you update your curriculum?
There’s no better way to determine if a school is right for your child other than taking a school tour. You can experience the environment first-hand, and observe the staff and teachers at work. You can also use the opportunity to ask all the questions you need to make a more accurate judgement for yourself and your child.