Preschool is a welcomed life event for many parents:  their children get to go to school, socialize with their peers, and have fun all while learning.  However, some children may not be ready for preschool at the age of four, especially if they haven’t experienced being in a playschool or daycare setting.  So how can you tell whether your child is ready for school or not?  What are some of the behaviours of a child who is ready to get a jump-start on his or her education?

Is My Child Ready For Preschool?

While many children will have a bit of separation anxiety on their first day of school, this doesn’t mean that they are not ready for school:  while many independent children have no issues waltzing into preschool on their first day without any attachment to their parents, other children may resist the change in their daily routine and be clingy to their mom or dad.  Again, this is totally normal.

School readiness is about being socially and emotionally prepared, as well as having personal care, language skills and motor skills.

While your child may not know how to read or write at the age of four, this is not something to worry about.  Usually, when children get into the classroom and see other children learning phonics and holding a pencil, they jump in and do the same thing.  The important thing, at least to the teachers and staff at Little Human Scholars preschool in Petaling Jaya, is that they are emotionally ready.

One of the things Little Human Scholars, a boutique Preschool in PJ, avoids is shocking children during their first day or week of school.  While sometimes separation anxiety does come into play during the first few days or the first week of kindergarten, it is often more difficult for the parents to say goodbye than it is for the children.  After about five minutes or so, they usually join their class or bond with their teacher and proceed to explore their new environment.

That being said, there are a few other behaviors to look out for that show whether or not your child is ready for kindergarten:

1)     Does your child listen to instructions and can follow through with them?

2)     Is your child more curious or more fearful when it comes to discovering new things?

3)     Does your child get along well with other children?

4)     Can your child remain attentive and quiet during story time?

5)     Can they make independent decisions and follow through?

6)     Can they express their feelings and needs without reacting emotionally?

7)     Can your child put on a jacket, button or unbutton their clothing, and use zippers?

8)     Is your child potty-trained and know basic hygiene?

In Asia, some parents have a need to enrol their child into preschool and kindergarten as soon as possible, but what is really important is that the child is emotionally and socially ready for school.  The last thing that is wanted is for a child to receive an emotional shock from their first day or week at preschool, and have a negative association about school for the rest of their educational career.  Our suggestion is to ease them into it, especially if they have not experienced playschool or daycare prior to being enroled in preschool or kindergarten.

Many children get used to a daily regimen or schedule, and when introduced to a new environment they may reject it.  You can make this transition easier for them by talking openly with your children about it, speaking positively about school and all the friends that are there, and by listening to their objections about being enroled in a new class.  If you do have concerns about starting your child in kindergarten, one of the best people to talk to would be the principal or head of education.  They will happily answer any questions you have and support you in creating an integration plan for your child so that they can transition as peacefully as possible into their new school regime!

One of the best ways to seamlessly integrate your child into school is by giving them a trial week where they can get a feel for the preschool they are about to attend.  Little Human Scholars preschool in PJ offers a free week trial for all preschoolers and those interested in playschool.  During this week, they provide all materials (not including meals) at no additional cost.  Register your child in a free week child at Little Human Scholars in PJ by clicking HERE and filling out the form!

Have a great day!

Jana Moreno