If your child is approaching the age of two you may be frantically doing an internet search for a “preschool near me,” because their preschool age is creeping up and you need a great place to send your child for not only social development, but to assist in their reading, writing, and math skills. While it’s up to the parent’s discretion of when and if to send their child to preschool, it seems as though the common age is right before or right after kids are turning two!
If you’re curious as to if there is an appropriate age to start your little one in preschool, in today’s post we’ll explore the different ages to start your child and if there is one concrete age to do it at. At Community Education Research Group, our preschool program starts at age two and a half and is completed by age four.
What is an Appropriate Age to Enroll Your Child in Preschool Learning?
While the average age a child enrolls in a preschool education program has many variables, typically it is right before the age of two or right after. There are private, non-secular programs that enroll children earlier, but it may be based on whether or not there is a space available in the school year or not. Most of the time when parents and caregivers want to get their kid into a specific school, they’ll take whatever spot opens up, regardless of their child’s age.
Enrolling your child in a program, no matter if it’s at 15 months or two and half years, it does take time before that to prepare. You have to decide where you want to enroll them, fill out the registration and pay the fees (if applicable), and make sure their vaccinations are up-to-date. The lingering, unanswered question you may have as a parent or caregiver may be “is my child ready?” You spend a great deal of time, energy, and money preparing for this upcoming enrollment, but how do you tell if they’re ready?
Telling Signs That Your Child is Ready for Preschool
Though most programs accept kids just shy of two or at two and a half, just because they reach the numerical age does not mean that they’re magically ready to begin their life as a student. Instead, preschool readiness may be more related to where they’re at developmentally — are they socially, physically, cognitively, and emotionally prepared for a structured preschool program with other a room full of other children? It’s easy to chock it up to “yes, of course my child is ready,” but take your time over a couples days or weeks and evaluate your child — you may even want to get a second opinion from their physician or other parents that interact with them. Below are telling signs that your child is indeed ready for preschool!
Does your child interact well with others?
Socialization is a big part of preschool, so your child’s ability to interact with others will be tested on a daily basis in preschool. There will be times when they’re required to work independently and other group time when they’ll interact with the entire class to learn and sing songs. In this setting, they’ll have to not only learn how to be good listeners but participate when it’s deemed appropriate.
If your child isn’t exposed to playgroups or other kids regularly, it may be helpful to get them acquainted with that scenario.
Is your child somewhat independent?
Preschool is a big jump for some kids in a lot of different ways — if they’re not used to socializing with other kids or used to structure at home, preschool can be a bit of an adjustment. You’ll want to make sure your child has basic skills such as being potty-trained, washing up after themselves, and sleeping or napping independently. Take note of what your child can do independently and work on the things they may need more help with.
It’s a hard decision that parents and caregivers are faced with — when is the most appropriate time to send your child to preschool and is there even a concrete age? While there isn’t a definitive or absolute age of when your child should attend preschool, generally, it’s after the age of two. From there, it’s much of an intuition and examination of whether or not your child is ready. Signs such as how your child interacts with others and if they’re independent are good indicators that they may be ready.
Stay tuned for part two, where we’ll further expand on signs that your child is ready for preschool!