As a preschool learning center and daycare in Stamford CT, Building Blocks Early Learning Center follows the preschool learning center standards set by the state of Connecticut. In our preschool program, we focus on the four major areas of development: physical development, intellectual growth, social skills and language/literacy skills. When evaluating an early child development center, it is important to know the state standards and how the childcare learning center is going above and beyond state requirements.
The Connecticut State Department of Education has created a curriculum framework for all preschools in CT to abide by. The framework stresses the same four core areas of focus to make sure you child’s education is well-rounded; this helps to ease the transition for your child from their preschool learning center to their new elementary school. As you talk with and tour the different preschools in CT, make sure you get an idea from them on how they meet the criteria for each of the four core areas: social development, physical development, cognitive development and creative development.
Highlighted below are some of the important criteria that you should look for.
Establishing sound social skills in a preschooler means helping them to develop a sense of self as an individual as well as developing appropriate interactions with others. The focus of this core area is to learn about themselves as a social being through playing with other children and participating in classroom activities.
Evaluate your prospective preschool learning center on their ability to teach your preschooler to identify themselves by their first and last name as well as their gender. Once they are able to characterize themselves, they can also recognize certain characteristics in others and begin to point out the differences or likenesses between themselves and others.
They should be learning at this age to articulate their feelings and to use their newly expanded vocabularies to participate in appropriate interactions with friends and grown-ups and to aid them when confronted with a conflict situation. Social development also encompasses abiding by learned rules and following class schedules.
As set forth by the Connecticut Framework, at the conclusion of their preschool program, children should clearly display their ability to learn. They should understand that they will be held accountable in their actions toward others and have a better understanding of themselves as an individual as well as their social role.
Physical development encompasses more than just physical activity. It also means teaching preschoolers about proper health habits, including diet and cleanliness. An early learning program with a focus on physical development should provide children with a hands-on educational experience to teach your child the ways in which their body works and the best ways to keep their tiny bodies healthy and strong as they grow and develop. At this stage in a child’s development, their preschool learning center should be encouraging activities that support hand-eye coordination and fine-tuning their gross-motor skills.
As can be seen at our Stamford daycare facility, at Building Blocks Early Learning Center, we feel strongly that your child needs room to stretch their minds as well as their bodies. Thus, a good childcare learning center will provide adequate space for your child to play. This includes space indoors and outdoors. Be sure to tour the entirety of each childcare facility, including their available outdoor space. There should be plenty of outdoor activities offered when the weather is nice and there should be alternative play space inside for when the weather is poor.
Upon completing the early learning program, children should have successfully strengthened their fine and gross-motor skills through coordination tasks, balancing abilities, and overall control of their bodies. Preschoolers should be aware of proper nutrition and hygiene. They should know how to take care of themselves, including participating in the kinds of activities that will keep them healthy and strong.
Preschool learning centers are responsible for your child’s early childhood education, which means establishing the first “building blocks” to their learning. Preschoolers learn early-on to express themselves by using their words. It’s at this time that they also begin to listen and comprehend when things are asked of them or stories are shared. At this stage, reading should be a huge part of their early education as well as the beginning phases of writing such as drawing and practicing letters.
Children who attend preschools in CT should be introduced at the very basic level to the concepts of math and science. Some fun activities that your childcare learning center should offer include nature walks that help to familiarize the children with the natural world and discovering patterns in nature. During this stretch of their lives, they are the most inquisitive. They should be encouraged to ask questions and look for answers to help them to understand the world around them.
As your child’s early childhood education evolves, you should be noticing their improvements in areas such as their critical thinking skills, improved memory and problem solving abilities. They should be using their developing vocabularies to improve their interactions which may be displayed through forming new friendships. Children should also be gaining a better understanding of the natural world around them.
To expand their young minds, preschoolers need a well-rounded educational experience. For preschools in CT, this means that in addition to learning about math, science and language, children should also be introduced to the arts. Preschoolers can explore their creative sides through the use of art and music as well as being encouraged to engage in pretend play.
At their preschool learning center, children should have the opportunity to learn about different musical instruments and the sounds they create as well as different forms that art can take such as painting, drawing and using chalk. Utilizing their big imaginations, preschoolers can practice putting on puppet shows and exploring their theatrical sides.
At the end of the day, they should be learning to convey their emotions through creative means which provides them with a healthy outlet for expression as they get older. Additionally, they should have an understanding of numerous different art forms, such as music, painting and theater.