Beginning your child's academic journey the right way is crucial to their overall development and growth- especially in their formative years when appropriate guidance can pave the pathway to a bright academic, social, and personal future. Pre-school education is not mandated by the government in Singapore, and this expedient approach to academics makes nursery education in private international schools necessary for a holistic learning experience.
Tracking a quality private nursery school that has an international and relevant curriculum, values your toddler's individuality and creativity; has a stimulating and safe environment, and a staff of experienced teaching and administrative personnel can be a hassle in a fast-paced economy like Singapore's, hence we've curated a checklist of important points to consider for the ideal start to your toddler's education.
A guide on what to look for while searching for the perfect nursery/kindergarten in Singapore school
Experiential and engaging learning programs
Learning paces, strengths, needs, and styles differ from each child, which traditional educational values and curricula cannot adhere to, making evolutionary experiential and personalized learning programs essential to the early learners of this new generation. Learning programs tailored to your child's individual needs that help them develop their communication, cognitive, motor, personal and social skills during the most important stage of their early development ensure a stable and ideal start to their education.
Exposure to outdoor play areas, interactive story-telling, physical activity, and group projects make learning a highly engaging experience for children and teach them hand-eye coordination, pique their interest in arts while keeping them physically active. It is important to make sure that these values are not only in the early pre-school but also in the primary, secondary, and tertiary curriculum of the educational institution you choose.
Interactive teaching Montessori plus and STEM curriculum
Highly interactive preschool programs created by physician and educator Maria Montessori are built on principles that nurture children's natural curiosity and implore them to self-learn while teachers act more like guides rather than lecturers.
Through this learning program that uses tools like story-telling manipulatives (objects that allow children to explore an idea with a hands-on approach), phonics to help them recognize sounds and puzzles to promote their cognitive and numeracy skills, children develop a life-long love for learning.
STEM-based learning, when implemented at this very early stage of education, teaches the toddler valuable skills in science, mathematics, and problem-solving, preparing them for their further education. These new-age learning techniques help children build their interpersonal skills and excel in all walks of life.
Safe and stimulating infrastructure
Stimulating a child's mind is the best way to make concepts easier to understand and let them learn through hands-on experience, enabling them to not limit their learning to the classroom. Hence creating an environment that stimulates all of your child's senses and makes them feel safe and comfortable to explore and learn in a creative and fun-filled manner should be of utmost importance.
In today's fast-paced world, children are vulnerable to threats from the outside world, and therefore their safety should be ensured by having CCTV surveillance covering all campus grounds, keeping records of the background of all school personnel- from teachers and administration to maids and travel assistance personnel, first-aid kits and child counselors on campus, to ensure complete safety of the children. Good nursery schools in Singapore should encompass all of these facilities to make sure that the learning environment for children is a safe and stimulating one.
Early environmental stimulation helps enhance your child's creative abilities while adding several other diverse and useful skills to their skillset. Specifically curated learning materials that are made to engage with the specific needs of each child help in advancing their skills with emphasis placed on four major areas of learning and growth:
- Practical life (personal and socio-economic development),
- Sensory (cognitive, numeracy, motor, and physical development skills)
- Language (communication and responsiveness) and
- Mathematics (hand-eye coordination, numeracy, organization, and problem-solving skills).
Along with these four major skills, other essential developmental skills like social interaction, self-motivation, independence, practical life skills, self-discipline, an appreciation for fine arts and music, community building, and innovation are key skills that should be a part of a child's education during developmental years.
Relevant technology and teaching
A curriculum that matches the needs and demands of a technologically and digitally evolving world and provides a holistic learning experience to your child is important to prepare them for the challenges that the real world presents.
The future is a digital space and it requires individuals that are innovative and tech-savvy. Introducing concepts that are evolving with the real world with age-appropriate technology, teaching, and early formalized experiences can help mold a bright future for your toddler.
Schools that have the evolutionary 9 Gems framework for all-around student development can help your child match pace with the ever-evolving concepts and advancements of the 21st century, by excelling in not only academics but also sports, visual and performing arts, personality development, innovation, creativity, leadership, and community.
Primary education preparation
The next step for your child after nursery school is a primary school education that will be their source of knowledge and learning for the next 6 years (primary year 1 through 6). The foundation for your child's further education is built on the values and learnings of their nursery education, making picking a good nursery school your utmost priority.
Primary education that includes the overall development of your child after their nursery school and prepares them for their secondary school (usually 1 to 3 years) is key to their academic and general success. Choosing a nursery school that has an equally commendable primary and secondary school is important when deciding your child’s future to ensure that they have a smooth transition from pre-school to primary school.
Their child is in an environment that nurtures creativity, builds a skillset, is engaging, stimulating, and safe during the most fundamental years of their growth is the main priority of parents looking for a good nursery school in Singapore. All of the aforementioned requirements are met in an international private Singapore school, the Montessori plus teaching program which ensures the future success of children in all parts of their lives.
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