Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Importance of Preschool


The time of year has come when I start receiving emails from parents who have children that are the right age to be starting preschool this coming fall. Some wonder what the fuss is about and don't think their children need to be enrolled. Others are thinking about teaching their kids at home and are a little stressed out about how to start and what to teach.

So I wanted to cover this subject again for all of you who are new to MommyMaestra, and as a refresher for those who have some idea about the importance of preschool but haven't needed those resources until now.

First of all, I want to stress the importance of preschool. Research shows that children who attend a good preschool and have involved parents are more likely to have better self-esteem, higher IQs, and fewer behavioral problems. They have higher literacy rates, test scores, and graduation rates. They are also less likely to repeat a grade level, smoke, drop out, or experience teen pregnancy.

And remember that the goal of preschool is to prepare your child for kindergarten. Latinos especially need to pay close attention to this as many of our children are starting school already behind, and must struggle to catch up. Sadly, some never do.

THIS DOES NOT MEAN THAT CHILDREN WHO DO NOT ATTEND PRESCHOOL ARE DOOMED TO FAIL.

Children who are kept home until kindergarten (or who homeschool), can begin their academic life just as prepared as their preschooled counterparts...PROVIDED that their parents (this means YOU!) work with them at home.

Okay. So let's say that you are that parent. You are committed to your child's education 100% and you've decided for whatever reason that you want to work with your preschooler at home instead of sending them to a preschool program. Now what do you do?

FIRST, felicidades! This is such an exciting time for you and your child. They are a beautiful vase waiting to be filled with the flowers of knowledge. This is your chance to set the foundation and make learning a lifelong addiction for your child.

SECOND, RELAX. This is so easy - and fun - for you and your child. I have a lot of resources on this blog. All you have to do is type in "preschool" in my search bar, or click on the preschool tag at the end of this post. Lots of great products out there that I continue to discover. But I'm going to go ahead and list some of them here. I am including Spanish/bilingual resources for those of you who want to teach your child in Spanish.

If you have ANY questions, por favor, don't hesitate to ask in a comment here on this post, or by contacting me directly.

On to some resources:

Should You Purchase a Preschool Curriculum?

Q & A: Should I Homeschool My Preschooler In Spanish, English, or Both?

Everyday Activities That Teach Your Preschooler

More on Homeschooling Your Preschooler

Bilingual Preschool Planner {Free Download}


Plaza Familia also has a lot of great resources for preschoolers, including some of my own articles with book suggestions and other materials.

Happy teaching!

3 comments:

  1. Monica, I just wanted to let you know of another exciting new resource called ReadyRosie.com that will be available to families with preschoolers beginning this fall. School districts and cities (via organizations like United Way) can provide their families with a username and password so they can access a daily video (1-2 minutes) in English and SPANISH demonstrating an activity they can do at home, in the grocery store, in the car, etc. with their child. The activities are based on PK standards. I have had the privilege to be in some of the videos with my own preschool daughters as well as serve as an instructional coach during the filming. It is super exciting and goes right along with this great advice and research you provide above!

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  2. That is so exciting! Thank you so much for sharing this. I hope everyone remembers to look this up. I'm putting it down on my list, too. Love it.

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  3. are there any techniques do's and don'ts to avoid raising children who end up speaking Spanglish? I WOULD LIKE MY GRANDCHILDREN TO BE FLUENT IN BOTH LANGUAGES BE ABLE TO MERGE INTO BOTH CULTURES AND BECOME WELL ACCEPTED WITHOUT PREJUDICES ANYWHERE? MY FIRST LANGUAGE WAS SPANISH, MY DAUGHTER'S ENGLISH, HOW CAN WE MAKE SURE THIS NEW GENERATION DOESNT LOOSE HERITAGE YET MERGES INTO WHATEVER THEY CHOOSE PERHAPS A THIRD? LIKE EVEN CHINESE BY THE TIME THEY ARE TEENAGERS?

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