What to look out for when choosing playgroup centres

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While playgroups appear elementary child’s play at first glance, they provide children with a foundational start in their early years. Our Juniors’ Schoolhouse for instance, has been helping children build a firm footing for accelerated development in their preschool years.

The following criteria will help new parents identify quality playgroups that place your child’s interest and development first and foremost.

Location

Find a conveniently located playgroup to cut out unnecessary travel time and allow for more family bonding over a leisurely breakfast, sleep or other fun relaxing activities. An established preschool like Our Juniors’ Schoolhouse has several Centres situated across Singapore.

Age Group

A centre that caters to a wide age range, including infancy and the earlier years helps parents plan comfortably for the future. Parents can stay with the same playgroup for years, allowing their children to grow and develop in familiar surroundings. This reduces the stress of constantly changing the environment and settles children to focus on building essential life skills. Our Juniors’ Schoolhouse accepts children aged between 18 months and 6 years, with different curricula levels to cater to each age group.

Reviews

In today’s digital age, reviews and opinions abound on the internet for every kind of query about playgroups. Parents can browse online forums or speak with experienced friends to learn more about which playgroups their children prefer. When browsing playgroups in Singapore, try searching for both reviews and complaints. This way, parents will have a more comprehensive understanding of the playgroups they are researching.

Qualifications

All childcare centres in Singapore are licensed by the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA). Licenses are provided for 6, 12 and 24 months. Those receiving 24 month certifications are excellent examples of how a quality playgroup setting should be.

Parents can visit a preschool to enquire about qualifications for both the centre and their staff. Note how much emphasis each centre places on safety, experienced care and quality service. Well established playgroups will have operating procedures that ensure proper systems are in place to guide staff in the event of any emergency.

Visit them

Once you have shortlisted a few potential playgroup centres, arrange to visit each of them. Seek the centre’s permission to observe their classes, and interact with the educators where possible. Observe how staff interact with the children to gain a better understanding of what to expect for your own child.

Dedicated, experienced educators and educarers are easy to identify and assure parents that they are leaving their children in the right hands. During a visit, parents should also observe how clean the Centre is, and how vibrantly the environment is setup for the children. Ask about meal times and the kind of food and nutrition served.

Value

While most families work within a budget, parents today are more discerning about the value of care and education their children are getting as opposed to how much they are paying. Be wary of centres that charge low fees and promise world-class standards. Arrange to visit during curriculum time to discover for yourself.

Centres that charge higher fees on the other hand, may be providing higher standards of care and education. Parents should enquire sufficiently before making a decision.

Take time to browse potential options before visiting shortlisted centres and deciding which gives best value for your child’s enrolment. To find out how Our Juniors’ Schoolhouse provides parents with excellent value do contact us here.

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