As parents, we are constantly making decisions about our child’s future. Whether it be what the best shoes are for your growing toddler and their never-ending walking adventures, starting them in a sports program to foster their sports passions, or even the thought of saving for college (Yes, college- the years fly by!). One of the first important schooling decisions beyond pre-school is Kindergarten. Many parents go back and forth trying to decide if their child would be successful in public school or if the extra attention, smaller class sizes, and well-rounded curriculum (including that awesome thing we early childhood experts call PLAY) would be better. As you are making your pros and cons list, let us help you out by sharing some of the great benefits to both transitional Kindergarten and private Kindergarten programs.
Low Teacher/Student Ratios: Did you know that public preschool programs can have over 20 students with one teacher? We can’t help but wonder how much-individualized attention each child is getting with such a high ratio. While we know these teachers do their best, the number of students just makes individualized support challenging. Oftentimes, private programs offer much lower ratios- typically 1:10 which gives your child more one-on-one time.
PLAY!!!!: Yes, we said it….we will say it again, PLAY! Kids need time to play and need to have choices. There are incredible benefits to allowing Kindergarten students the opportunity to play and learn at the same time. Play builds imagination and creativity while also fostering cognitive growth. Cooking up that meal in the home center is actually also improving literacy and delivers emotional and behavioral benefits. In recent years, the public school system has gotten away from the play. Kitchens, blocks, and dress-up items have disappeared from the classroom and have been replaced with literacy and math programs that just lose their appeal to kids. When your child is part of a classroom that offers both play and academic experiences they will grow in ways you never could have imagined.
Lots of Enrichment Programs: Many private Kindergarten programs offer some of the most engaging enrichment programs out there. From STEM activities to music and movement classes they just have it all. Foreign languages, art, and even chapel times are also available outside for young kids in a private school setting.
Individualized academic rigor- Due to smaller class sizes, students get a much more individualized approach to academic growth and development. Programs can include the latest research-based methods on literacy, mathematics, STEAM, and Social Studies. Students needing more support or needing to move on can easily be within the open growth-mindset atmosphere in a private school setting.
**Here at Stepping Stones, we offer both transitional Kindergarten and Private Kindergarten. We use the most up-to-date research-based academic programs, we believe play is at the forefront of the early childhood playroom, and we know the importance of low teacher/student ratios and their impact on the classroom. Be sure to visit our website to get more information or to schedule a tour today!