Preschool Options For Your Child: What You Need To Know And How To Choose

When it comes time to pick out a preschool for a child, it can be overwhelming trying to choose the right one when there are a multitude of different types of preschool out there. There are several popular and well known programs that a parent should know about. The pros and cons of each program will help you decide what is best for a growing child just entering preschool.


Arguably the most well-known of all preschool school programs, Montessori was established in the early 1900's. Montessori schools believe children are natural learners. Teachers guide the children through a structured environment while encouraging hands on experience which lets the students be in control. Self direction and individual learning let kids learn at a pace that is perfect for them. 

Waldorf Schools

Waldorf schools focus on teaching children through music and a steady routine. Often with these programs, the kids have the same teacher for several years. This builds a trust and routine that children find safe and encouraging. The children learn through role-playing, cooking, and other creative endeavors.

Parent Co-Ops

Parent cooperative preschool programs require parents to donate part of their time to the class or school. Parent co-ops are run entirely by the parents. Many children enjoy having their parents in the classroom. Here, a child learns both from the teacher and their parent. These programs vary widely, so it's important to check the core principles before enrolling your child in a co-op.

Bank Street

Bank Street preschools are focused on play-based learning. Similar to the Montessori style, the children are self-directed while the teacher is there to keep them focused on their education. Children who do not need strong structure are likely to thrive at these schools. Bank Street preschools value hands-on, interactive and expressive learning.

Language Immersion Schools

This program is exactly how it sounds, it is a full immersion into a foreign language. Parents who want their children to learn a new language may find that this is the school for them. The teachers speak completely in the chosen language and the children learn from observing and listening. Young children learn foreign languages easier this way than the translation programs taught in middle and high schools.

No matter what type of preschool is chosen, an early childhood education is a great way to ensure a quality lifelong education. No matter if the parent decides to be actively involved with a co-op or if they want to let the teachers be the guide, picking the right preschool can feel like a daunting task. Remember, if it's not the right fit, it is always the parent's right to transfer their child to a different school or program. For more information about preschools, visit an education center such as Twelve Corners Day Care Ctr