Even though preschool seems like a fun, unstructured facility where kids play, it is so much more than that. It is a structured, well-organized and highly regulated environment that has the aim to teach your children various useful skills. It also serves as an excellent base for further academic progress and growth. Parents should definitely enrol their children in preschool if they can, as they will only benefit from it. There are both public and private ones, and of course, public ones are more affordable.
As we already briefly mentioned, there is a myriad of benefits that children get by attending preschool. First of all, children learn to follow directions in preschool. Also, this period helps them adjust to kindergarten. Obviously, it provides opportunities for free play and establishes social and emotional development. Moreover, it encourages physical development as well. Attending preschool promotes education equality and it also helps children develop motor and cognitive skills. And finally, preschool nurtures creativity and curiosity. Keep reading to learn more about these benefits.
1. Preschool teaches children to follow directions
We all know how difficult it is sometimes for children to listen to their parents and follow certain instructions or directions. That’s where attending preschool comes in pretty handy. Children must learn to behave in educational settings and respect their educators. They learn to do that and prepare themselves for school by attending early education institutions, such as preschool. Children need to go through this as they learn to respect other adult people, besides their parents. There are tough times and adjustments, but it’s much easier when children are young. People don’t hold some misbehaviours against them. However, it’s different when you have an older child who misbehaves. There’s usually not too much understanding and compassion in that case.
2. It helps them adjust to kindergarten
Going to preschool is the perfect way for children to adjust to attending educational institutions. After preschool, there is kindergarten and after that primary school. So, preschool is practically a base for all of it. It can be quite difficult, challenging and overwhelming for children to get used to the whole system. Everything is new to them: getting up on time, dressing up, behaving in a certain way in kindergarten and listening to other people, who are not their parents. So, you see why it requires some adaption. Preschool educators slowly ease them into the process. They start with simple things such as hand washing, sitting quietly, sharing things and doing certain things at certain times, among other things.
3. It provides opportunities for free play
Even though every preschool works by one of the best child care programs, there is always time for free play. And contrary to popular belief, free play does have plenty of benefits other than having fun. According to some research, these playful experiences prepare children for deeper learning in future. It underlines and promotes an essential skill such as executive functioning. Moreover, children can experience all kinds of different free play in preschool that they can’t at home. The power of preschool lies in the power of play and exploration. Children’s brain is quite curious and quality preschool aims to expose children to all kinds of diverse subjects.
4. It establishes social and emotional development
When it comes to developing certain skills, preschool is the best way for children to develop socially and emotionally. They develop these skills in the first place and afterwards, academic skills. By being a part of a large group, children learn to share and take turns. They learn to communicate with their peers and resolve different arising issues. They learn to be empathic towards their classmates and also to regulate their emotions. These skills are essential for achieving future academic success. Without them, children can have a tough time overcoming certain obstacles. Hence, preschool is a challenging yet safe and structured facility where children learn to deal with plenty of things.
5. It encourages physical development
Besides all of these skills, preschool also encourages physical development. It has been found that physical development directly affects children’s ability to learn. In preschool, children develop both their fine and gross motor skills. Fine motor skills include holding a pencil and crayons correctly, colouring and staying within lines, completing some shapes, matching things and so on. Gross motor skills, on the other hand, imply whole-body movements that involve balance and coordination. Preschool provides children with everything they need to progress in these skills. Moreover, they also spend a lot of time playing outdoors. Indirectly, such physical development boosts their self-confidence.
6. It promotes education equality
Preschool goes beyond children’s families. It involves kids of different ages, cultural backgrounds and both genders. Some findings show that quality early education settings are the key to education equality, in terms of income, geography and race. The same research also states that children who don’t attend preschool, start kindergarten or primary school at a strong disadvantage. This disadvantage refers to academic and socio-emotional skills. Ultimately, it is dangerous as it can lead to a vicious circle of constantly lagging behind and having to catch up.
7. Children develop language and cognitive skills
Other skills that children develop by attending preschool include language and cognitive skills. As we know, children learn the language best in a language-rich environment such as preschool. Educators help children learn language by introducing new vocabulary items as part of controlled activities. They also tend to ask thought-provoking questions and revise learnt vocabulary through different methods. Preschool provides ample opportunities for developing communication skills with read-aloud stories and books as well as singing. Moreover, they also develop their cognitive skills by trying out new things. They are prompted to ask questions and observe the world around them.
8. Preschool nurtures creativity and curiosity
As young children have an active imagination, preschool is a perfect environment that nurtures creativity and curiosity. It is organised in such a way to boost exploration and encourage children to develop their own thoughts and ideas. It helps them develop their personality.
As you can see, the benefits of attending preschool are numerous. And these are not all – we’ve just tackled some of the most prominent and necessary ones. A quality preschool can be a great base for your children’s future academic successes.
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