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Talk to Area Experts from Thirteen Local Preschool Programs During GEPL’s Preschool Fair

Category: GEPL News
Posted: November 6, 2017

By: Katy Almendinger, Early Literacy Librarian

Picture of four preschool aged kids with arms around each other's shoulder.There’s a growing demand for quality Pre-K programs in this country. The Glen Ellyn Public Library is holding a Preschool Fair on Wednesday, November 8 to help you find the best preschool for your child.

A whopping 1.5 million 4-year-olds entered preschool last fall. The Pre-K landscape, due to political support and cutting-edge research, has changed significantly in recent years. In fact, recent studies show that “90% of parents believe that the preschool years are a critical period of development.” But why? We know a child’s brain develops faster before the age of six than at any other point in their lifetime. So it makes sense that children who attend preschool acquire strong language, math, social skills, problem-solving skills, and executive functioning abilities.

Despite these educational benefits, preschool programs are not created equally. It can be hard to find the best program for you and your child’s needs. There are a number of qualities and questions to consider when analyzing your options.

  • Ask questions about play. Play is an essential component of early childhood, and it’s at the center of how young children learn. Are children offered choices and free to follow interests? Does the school facilitate sensory experiences? Do kids get time to play outside? Is play structured? Research shows that children have a larger learning outcome when play is tied to a common goal or plan.
  • Ask about classroom transitions. Young children thrive on set routines, familiar transitions, and predictability. Think about what kind of structure your child needs.
  • Observe the classroom. Is it a comfortable learning environment? Are student projects on the walls? Would it be too over-stimulating for your child? This kind of observation can also tell you about the projects your child would be doing.
  • Ask your friends. Your friends and neighbors can provide valuable feedback about a school’s reputation.
  • Make a list of your priorities. Think about the school’s location: does it need to be close to home or close to work? Think about timing: do you need morning or afternoon preschool? Consider the preschool’s educational approach: do you admire the Montessori approach or want a faith-based program?

And what better way to determine which preschool works best for your child, than to stop by the library’s Preschool Fair? At the Fair, area experts representing thirteen local preschool programs will be on hand to answer your questions and provide valuable information about their programs. Schools represented include:

  • The Ark
  • The Avery Coonley School
  • B.R. Ryall YMCA
  • College of DuPage Early Childhood Center
  • CCSD 89 Preschool
  • Glen Ellyn Park District Preschool Education
  • KinderCare Learning Center

  • Montessori Academy of Glen Ellyn
  • Rainbow Place Christian Preschool
  • St. James Preschool Program
  • St. Mark’s Preschool
  • Westminster Preschool
  • Wheaton Montessori School

These experts want to connect with prospective parents about their unique preschool programs! Come prepared to ask questions on Wednesday, November 8 from 6-8 pm.

Sources:

Bouffard, S. (2017). Most Important Year: Pre-Kindergarten and the Future of Our Children. Penguin Publishing Group.

Christakis, E. (2016). The Importance of Being Little: What Preschoolers Really Need from Grownups. NY, NY: Viking, an imprint of Penguin Random House LLC.

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