Preschool & Daycare Options: 5 Educational Philosophies Child Care Centers Use by Mike Prochaska

Preschool & Daycare Options: 5 Educational Philosophies Child Care Centers Use

Do your children go to a daycare, preschool or a child-care center? Do you know what educational philosophy they use? As a preschool teacher, most parents I talk to don't. They just know that their kid loves their teacher. Here are five educational philosophies parents should know about:

  • Montessori Method: A child-centered educational method based on theories from Italian educator Maria Montessori. The philosophy is built on the belief that children pass through six stages of development. At a Montessori school, kids direct their own learning, choosing among the areas of the classroom. Every activity has its place in the classroom and is self-contained. Children are encouraged to work without other children. 
  • Academic Programs: They prepare children for elementary school.
  • Religious-Based: Many preschools are religious-based schools and are sponsored by churches, synagogues and other religious organizations.
  • Developmentally Appropriate Practice: Children are encouraged to learn through activities that are appropriate to their age and stage of development. Kids can choose among several activities and can participate alone or in small groups. 
  • HighScope Approach: Kids learn by doing! The teacher is more of a facilitator of play. There are different centers and children are allowed to play at each area. HighScope is the plan-to-review sequence – 10 minutes in small groups where children plan what they want to do; 60 minutes work time to carry out the plan; and then another 10 minutes to review the plan.
  • Reggio Emilia: The education system believes in educating the whole child by creating a curriculum based on the interests of the children. Teachers observe the children to decide which projects best suit the kids. A Reggio Emilia teacher must always track and document the growth of the children in the classroom, which takes away a lot of time of actually teaching and facilitating play.

Honestly, I think the best one is when they combine some of the philosophies together, because they all have something to offer the children. Children learn through play.

Which educational philosophy do you prefer for your children?

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Elisa A. Schmitz 30Seconds
Great breakdown of the educational approaches, Mike Prochaska !

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