Every child’s journey through early education will vary depending on the circumstances of the parents. Some children attend a day care straight away while others are not introduced into a structured setting until they attend regular school.
It’s entirely the choice of the family what early education path to take. However, one thing many parents will agree on is the importance of a kindergarten (pre-prep) program.
Kindergarten programs are offered through many daycare facilities across Queensland. The main difference between daycare and kindergarten is that daycare facilities are open from 6.30am to 6pm (but usually only have a kindergarten teacher on from 9am to 3pm) while community kindy programs are offered five days a fortnight, usually starting around 9am and ending around 2.45pm to coincide with real school*.
So why should you consider enrolling your little one into a pre-prep program? Here are 21 excellent reasons:
- 1. Kindy programs help your child get used to being around other children.
- 2. They can foster confidence and independence.
- 3. They also help children develop a sense of pride in their work (even though they bring home bits of random paper and craft every single week).
- 4. Kindy allows your child to get creative (and messy) without having to clean up paint, playdoh and glitter.
- 5. Kindy programs will introduce your kids to basic literary and numeracy skills which will be required next year.
- 6. They also teach them how to wash their hands, pack up after playing and clean up after meals.
- 7. And let’s not forget about all the new songs and nursery rhymes they learn (and come home singing over and over again).
- 8. There are plenty of other important lessons a kindy environment can teach children, including social skills like sharing, taking turns and listening to others.
- 9. This can help develop empathy and build communication skills.
- 10.Children learn to communicate to the teachers as well as other children, not just through regular conversations but through singing, nursery rhymes and roll-playing activities.
- 11. Being around other kids can also teach your children that every child is different and that’s okay.
- 12. Social stimulation provides your children with a chance to play with other toys than what’s at home (and you don’t even have to clean them up after!).
- 13. Kindy programs provide stay at home parents with a bit of a break (so you can actually go grocery shopping in peace for once).
- 14. They get you both used to what’s to come next year and allows for a gradual change into this schooling environment.
- 15. Sure, it can be hard to say goodbye, but kindy programs help your children get used to having someone else around and can improve separation anxiety issues.
- 16. They also allow children to learn things from someone other than you. It’s always nice to have a different perspective when learning.
- 17. Kindy programs provide a structured environment (even if it appears to be chaotic at drop off).
- 18. They can also help children makes choices – which activity do they want to do first, etc.
- 19. Plus, these programs teach children about belongings and boundaries – every child will have their own space for their bag, water bottle, etc.
- 20. Kindy programs provide plenty of outdoor activity and exercise (and hopefully wears them out for a smooth bedtime).
- 21. Most importantly, kindy programs ensure children are ready for the next stage in their lifelong journey of learning.
*Please note that every individual organisation will have different opening and closing hours. Please contact the individual company to determine the hours of operation.