4 Reasons To Pick A Preschool With Less Structure
Structure definitely plays an important role in the development of preschool age children, but it has its shortcomings too. Choosing a school program that is too tightly structured can actually interfere with the learning processes of most young children. Find out how a program with a stronger focus on unstructured play benefits your child in four distinct ways.
Better Self Management
Young children who spend more time creating their own play scenarios are better equipped to entertain themselves when waiting for something or dealing with unexpected delays. While children who grow up in highly structured environments may act wonderfully when given directions and goals, they can end up acting poorly when left without guidance. Unstructured play time during preschool can pay off in better self control and management skills later.
More Tailored Environment
It's easier for the preschool teacher to tailor each lesson or play time to the individual needs of the students when less structure is needed. For example, a teacher can spend more one-on-one time with a student struggling with shapes while the rest of class moves on to self-directed art projects of their favorite shapes. Too much of a focus on structure often leaves students feeling confused or even embarrassed when they fail to keep up with their classmates.
There's a tendency to over-schedule the lives of preschool students in order to take advantage of the brain's absorption capacity for new information. While language classes and music training can keep some preschoolers engaged and happy, others find daily preschool classes more than enough to keep them busy. If your child is experiencing frustration or having trouble sleeping on a regular schedule, you may need to dial back their responsibilities. Unstructured play reduces the amount of stress on a young child to perform according to expectations, and this could free up their focus for more competitive tasks like learning new musical and athletic skills.
Higher Language Use
Finally, students tend to use higher level language skills when playing creatively and without guidance than when directed to do so by a teacher. This makes all those role-playing games of shopkeeper and restaurant owner very important for building better language use, especially among preschoolers that are struggling with certain parts of speech. Give them the freedom to decide what to say and how to speak to each other by picking a preschool that values unstructured and creative play time over worksheets and lectures.
Check it out: many preschools base their approach to education on the specific needs of the children who attend. Make sure to visit a variety of local preschools to find the best fit for your child.