This is the time of year when many parents are in the process of discovering their educational options for next year. And while many parents already have their plans in place, parents of the youngest children may find themselves still making sure that they have explored all of their preschool options. Whether you decide to tour a preschool once a week while you are exploring your options are you are willing to take the advice of a friend, the decision that you make about where your child will go to preschool can help set the stage for a successful elementary start in a few years.
Preschool classrooms can vary, so it is often important for parents to make sure that they take time to understand what the differences are between the different options that are available.
For some parents, for example, it is important to find an environment to make sure that children learn to work independently. In a mixed age classroom, for instance, other parents enjoy the option of letting their children learn from those who are older and lead those who are younger. For some parents, this combination of independent learning and mixed age classrooms can be found in a Montessori environment. Consider some of these facts and figures about the benefits of a quality preschool experience and how it can help lead to future success:
- 75% of young children in the U.s. participate in a preschool program.
- The employment of preschool teachers is projected to grow 10% from 2016 to 2026 as a result of the increasing demand for early childhood education. This percentage represents a number that is increasing faster than the average for all occupations.
- 51% of three- to five-year-olds who attended full-day programs were enrolled in preschool programs in the year 2015.
- 67% of children in the year 2012 whose mothers worked full-time or part-time were enrolled in center-based childcare.
- 59% of children in the year who had mothers looking for work were enrolled in center-based childcare, and 52% whose mothers were not in the labor force were still enrolled in center-based childcare.
Academic preschool programs continue to grow in popularity as more and more families make sure that they are doing everything possible to provide a rich learning experience for their children.