Finding a local preschool or childcare program that’s a good fit for your family can be a challenging task for parents. Often throughout this search, parents can feel inundated with options of programs all offering slightly different learning experiences and tuition options. So how do you decide where to enroll your infant, toddler, or preschooler? Check out these tips to help you in your journey to finding the best high-quality Phoenix preschool for your child.
1) Observe the environment from your child’s level.
As you explore and tour programs remember to take the time to see how the environment appears from your child’s point of view. Most preschool programs will make every effort to maintain a clean, organized, and welcoming environment. The difference you will notice in a high-quality program is that extra emphasis will also be placed on materials and centers within children’s eye level. These areas will be noticeably stimulating and exciting, showcasing what themes the preschool environment is focussed on for the week or month.
Your child’s comfort level in an environment may be one of the best tools to gage programs as you tour them. An environment where children feel safe and welcome to explore on their own, talk to peers, or engage with the teacher can indicate a place they would feel comfortable attending regularly.
2) Talk to other families
Families that are already attending a program are an unmatched resource for you in your search. As you tour, ask the director to introduce you to a family and take the opportunity to hear of their experience with the program. Remember that while it is terrific to see reviews of the program that are at a five-star level, it is also important to hear of real experiences that were less than desirable. Understanding how the program approaches and remedies parent concerns can tell you much more than any five-star review.
3) Ask about flexible scheduling
A common frustration for families searching for childcare and preschool programs is the lack of flexibility in scheduling. Many programs charge tuition via a weekly contract which results in the families being charged for a time their child wasn’t actually in care. At Valley Child Care & Learning Centers, we offer daily rates and flexible scheduling, which allows families the convenience of attending and being charged only for the care they use!
4) Survey the classroom’s engagement level
When you walk into a classroom, do the children immediately surround you? Alternatively, are they completely engaged in an activity, so much so that maybe they don’t even glance up? If it’s the second option, that’s a great sign! High-quality, engaging programs are designed to have something new and exciting for children to explore every day. These experiences not only give children something to look forward to but create opportunities for them to ask open-ended questions and think outside the box.
About Valley Child Care & Learning Center…
Established in 1967, Valley Child Care and Learning Center has continuously led the childcare, daycare, and preschool industry in Phoenix, Arizona. Our founder and Grandfather, Paul Emch, began with a simple mission to “provide tender loving care and education to each child.” Paul’s legacy lives on as we continue to uphold his original values and have grown to a well-established name in the Phoenix community. Today, we provide care for nearly 1,900 infants, toddlers, and preschool age children at a total of nine programs. Our convenient locations include North Phoenix, Paradise Valley, Glendale, Anthem, Surprise, El Mirage, Chandler, South Phoenix, and Tempe! At each of our program locations, you will find qualified staff eager to join us in ensuring children are receiving the highest quality care alongside a complete preschool experience. Upon graduation from our program, your child will be equipped to succeed in Kindergarten, and beyond!