Introducing children to preschool is like getting our vegetable patch harvest-ready (i.e. very tricky business!), but the secret lies in that extra bit of dedication. Because we see our preschool as an extension of your home, we think it’s super important that our gardeners work hand in hand with parents (that’s you!) to create the best environment for young seedlings.
Remember that children are complex, dynamic individuals and it’s often difficult to get a full read on who they are just on the first day. Our team of teachers have all the right know-how, but we have to give the child time to show us who they are, what they like or don’t like, how they learn etc.
The biggest tip we tell parents at The Garden House Preschool is this: tell us everything, and we mean EVERYTHING! Our golden rule is that there’s never too much information. A simple checklist will include the following:
What languages are spoken at home, and what does your child best understand? (Our teachers are a multilingual bunch since they’re required to know keywords in a smattering of languages.)
Who are their favourite people?
Do they have other caregivers?
What are their favourite toys?
What is their favourite food?
What’s their sleep schedule like and do they have regular naps?
Have there been any changes at home lately?
Most preschools (like us) will also ask for medical history, so make sure to have information on allergies, illnesses, and vaccinations at the ready.
Some preschools encourage home visits as it’s a great opportunity to observe and interact in an environment that’s familiar and safe for both the parent and child. Parents are more open to sharing when they’re in a comfortable setting, and this helps teachers develop a better understanding of the family, especially on a cultural level – in one of our Chinese families, popo always has the last word!
You may not be attending class, but make no mistake: there is background work to do! Make time to attend parent-accompanied sessions that preschools organise – you get to meet teachers and other staff members, as well as get cozy with the school setting and curriculum. We offer a teaser programme for children (15 months – 3 years) for parents who want to get a feel of our school and what we offer.
We’re not going to say preschool integration is easy peasy, but give your child (and yourself) some time to adapt. Consistency is the key. Remember – you’re our biggest cheerleader!