The only common denominator with all kindergarten schools is that they all teach kids between the ages of 3 and 6 years old, and much like primary and secondary schools, each school would have its own ideas about how to deliver their curriculum. Of course, the curriculum for a kindergarten school would only deal with basics and the majority of schools use the National Curriculum, with perhaps a few additional extras, yet there can be a great difference in the way the curriculum is delivered, and this is a very important aspect of early learning programs.
Teacher Centred Schools
This is the traditional method of teaching, where the teacher stands at the front of the class and instructs the students, yet this system of teaching relies heavily on memorisation and doesn’t really help children to develop critical thinking skills. The teacher might, for example, draw a picture on the whiteboard and ask the students to copy it onto a sheet of paper they have been given, which doesn’t really allow the child to be creative.
Student Centred Schools
This is a far better learning system for young children, as the learning content is chosen based upon the children’s interests, which further motivates them to learn, plus the teacher takes on a different role from the traditional way of instructing and is more of a facilitator than a teacher. The students are guided by the teacher to learning outcomes and are always encouraged to ask questions, something that rarely happens in a teacher centred environment.
Learning By Doing
Known also as experiential learning, or hands-on learning, this method offers the child opportunities to have some real involvement, and research shows us that children learn more with a hands-on approach than they would in a traditional instruction environment. There is one kindergarten in Bangkok that applies the Reggio Emilia approach to early learning, which is widely regarded as the best in the world, and it is both child-centred and applies experiential learning. This is the kind of school that equips the children with the necessary skills to excel when they enter their formal education years, and your child will develop essential social skills in their time at kindergarten school.
Nurturing a Love of Learning
This is one of the major goals for every kindergarten school, as a life-long love of learning will certainly benefit your child in so many ways, and this will stay with them for the rest of their lives. All activities would be fun-based and no longer than 15-20 minutes, as young children have a very short attention span, and with a program that includes song, dance and art, the children develop in every aspect, both physically and mentally.
If you are thinking of sending your child to a kindergarten school, make sure that you book a tour and that will enable you to talk with the principal, plus you can observe the children engaging in some activities. Making the right choice could make all the difference to your child’s education, so choose wisely.