Linda, an undergraduate student who is pursuing a degree in business computing in a private college in KL has asked for an open discussion on her Final Year Project called "Technology Intergrated Montessorri Preschool". This project intends to solve some problems that have hindered the positive development of early childhood education.
In her own words "As I am now on the analysis phase, here are some questions that might help for in-depth analysis of the problems by gathering the parents’ opinions on the related problems. At last, it is hoped that this can assist in designing the right solution for each problem.The participation of parents and any opinions with clarifications would be very helpful and highly appreciated."
Well Linda, you have come to the right place ie the blogosphere to get your opinions. Bloggers love discussions. However, perhaps some other more popular blogs will get you more opinions. Anyway, I don't mind helping out and if any other parent bloggers want to help out too, you can post the following questions and your own answers on your blog to get more opinions for Linda. You can treat it like a tag or meme but remember to leave your link here for Linda if you do. :) Or you can just post your answers in numerical order in the comment section. Thank you for your participation.
1. Do childcare and preschool sound different for parents?
Yes, it sounds different to me. Childcare is like another name for babysitter ie taking care of a child's basic needs, food, sleep and looking after the child whereas preschool as the name suggest is a school or learning environment.
2 Will parents choose childcare instead of preschool, or vice versa, by knowing that preschools offers more educational services, while childcares are more custodial and most of the time offer full-day service that benefit the working parents?
I would choose childcare over preschool for younger children and a mix of preschool and childcare for older ones eg preschool in the morning and childcare in the afternoon, something like that if I were working full time and there was no one else available to help mind my kids.
Especially, for Question 3 and 4, Please sort out the options provided, from the most important to the least. In which, the inclusion of some justification and additional important points will be greatly appreciated.
3. What are the requirements that can make up a quality preschool?
- Well-managed curriculum
- Facilities (e.g Library, playground, teaching materials)
- Quality educators
- Learning environment
- Others ___________
- Quality educators - To me the human factor ie teachers are the most important requirement because little ones look up to teachers as a figure of authority. What teachers say is always right. Just ask any child. She won't believe what you say if her teacher told her otherwise.
- Learning Environment - At preschool level, I would pick one that emphasizes on learning through play rather than learning through homework
- Facilities - Safety and cleanliness and not too cramp will be my main criteria.
- Well-managed curriculum - There must be some structured learning and lots of repetition for the little ones to learn. The curriculum should also include other interesting activities that support learning and yet keep the child's interest and enthusiasm for learning.
- Others - Security and fees as well
4. How would parents define “quality educators”?
- A degree holder
- Training certified person
- Patience in dealing with the children
- Others ___________
- Patience in dealing with the children - definitely comes up tops for me
- Training certified person -must be genuine certification and not just someone trained for "one week" by the preschool principal. However, having said this, I actually didn't bother to check up on the teachers background at my daughter's preschool. :P
- A degree holder - Not really necessary
- Others - A parent experienced with dealing with little ones would be acceptable to me too
5. Would you, as parents, allow your children to be exposed to technology in their preschool age (3 to 5 years old) as supportive tools in their learning process? Such as: computer interactive game help in the building of creativity, letters introduction with the use of computers, access to internet, etc. (any example of any kind of technology that have helped your children to learn might be helpful)
Oh yes, most definitely. We're living in the tech age now and the earlier they are exposed the better. I support multi media teaching ie the use of different methods and tools including technology.
6. Finally, any opinions to point out and expectations to be expected from a preschool, please do clarify it further.
Safety and security is the most important criteria I expect from a preschool.
I hope this helps, Linda. Parents, if you post the questions and your answers on your blog, please remember to leave your link behind. I will link to you in this post making it easier for Linda to find you. Thanks and have a nice weekend!
Thanks to the following parents for your feedback and participation:
Mama's Bag of Tricks
Jewelle Tan Personally
Banana Mom's Guide To Preparing For Chinese School - For Non-Chinese Speaking Families
Friday, April 04, 2008