Anyone with preschool age children wonders what makes a top preschool and how the best schools are distinguished from the rest. There are a lot of things that contribute to differences between one preschool and another, but the most important issue is the teachers. The top preschools have quality teachers. Yet it can be hard to judge a teacher, since we make decisions about people based on how we like their personality. A teacher might have a lovely personality if we?re looking for a friend; but not the right qualities to teach our children effectively. The same can be true in reverse. So what should we be looking for in a great preschool teacher?
How Does the Teacher Manage the Classroom?
The top preschools hire teachers who know how to manage the classes in a way that provides structure and boundaries while not curtailing the children?s natural curiosity. They know how to redirect negative behaviors, stabilize the emotions of the children, and maximize learning. Great teachers also know more than one type of instructional technique, and which ones are the best to use with different groupings of students.
How Does the Teacher Support the Children Emotionally?
The best preschools hire teachers that care as much for the children?s personal and emotional life as for their academic needs. They know how to be sensitive to children?s worries and fears, while also giving them the tools to manage their issues and overcome them. They also respect the children, taking their input and using it to improve the classroom in ways that will help the children come to see it as their own; but they will not let the children take over in ways that interfere with learning and development. They know how to connect emotionally with the kids and how to create a supportive learning environment.
They Know How to Teach
There?s a big difference between teaching and lecturing. A great private preschool will know how to encourage the children to use their minds, building their confidence to ask questions and think carefully about what they see and hear. They know that students do need to memorize some information, but that higher order thinking skills are key to develop. Top preschools also find teachers who know how to develop the children?s language abilities and learn how to express themselves in positive and constructive ways.
The best schools have great facilities and good administration. They have policies that make it easy for parents and school to communicate. They look after the students and do everything to keep them safe. But what distinguishes the truly top preschools from all the rest are the teachers. When looking for the best option for your children, make sure you find a preschool with great teachers.