How to Choose the Best Preschool for Your Child: The Ultimate Guide to Finding, Getting Into, and Preparing for Nursery School

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9781402242083: How to Choose the Best Preschool for Your Child: The Ultimate Guide to Finding, Getting Into, and Preparing for Nursery School

"The most useful tool out there for families about to embark on the search for a preschool!"
-Helen Cohen, director, Frances Jacobson Early Childhood Center, Boston

A must-have for parents of future preschoolers

Starting preschool is one of the biggest milestones in a child's life. With this comprehensive, step-by-step guide, you won't have to navigate the preschool process alone. Whether the nursery schools nearby enroll every child, or they're so competitive that they only accept a few applicants, this book has everything you need to know to choose and get into the right preschool for your child. You'll learn:

  • How to find high-quality preschools in your area
  • Insight into popular preschool programs (Montessori, Waldorf, play based, cooperative)
  • Key criteria to consider when choosing a preschool
  • Strategies for paying for preschool (financial aid, tax benefits)
  • How to help prepare your child for the first day of preschool
  • Advice for gaining admission into competitive programs, including getting off the waiting list, submitting a strong application, and preparing for a child assessment

 

"This well-organized, comprehensive book will help parents navigate the world of preschool."
-Nancy Schulman and Ellen Birnbaum, authors of Practical Wisdom for Parents: Raising Self-Confident Children in the Preschool Years and directors of the 92nd Street Y Nursery School, New York

"A gift to every parent starting the preschool search."
-Irene Byrne, MA, author of Preschools by the Bay and executive director of the Phoebe Hearst Preschool, San Francisco

"synopsis" may belong to another edition of this title.

About the Author:

Jenifer Wana conceived the idea for How to Choose the Best Preschool for Your Child after going through the process of researching and applying to preschools for her son and while doing a pro bono consulting project for GreatSchools, a nonprofit education organization that helps parents find and evaluate preschools and K–12 schools.

Excerpt. © Reprinted by permission. All rights reserved.:

Introduction
This is the book I wanted to read when I started looking for a preschool for my son, Josh. Unfortunately, it hadn't been written yet.

Like any parents, my husband and I wanted to find the best place for our son-a preschool that would nurture him, teach him, and be a good fit for our family. But I quickly learned that this would not be as easy as it seemed. I was over­whelmed by the options-when I was growing up, kids just went to the nursery school closest to home, if they went at all. I didn't know where to begin to find the best preschools in my neighborhood or what characteristics defined a high-quality program. Terms like Montessori, child centered, and co-op were foreign to me. School tours gave me a clearer picture of what each school was like, but I wasn't sure what I should be on the lookout for or what questions I should ask to see if it was the right place for us.

What I also discovered about the preschool process was that there is no process. Unlike college or graduate school, there are no standard time lines or admissions procedures that all nurs­ery schools follow-and very few resources to help parents navigate the process. So I went to preschool fairs, attended seminars and panel discussions, read books and articles, and had countless conversations with other parents who had been through the process. I pored over school websites and bro­chures, toured schools, and filled out endless applications. For a few programs, I brought Josh in to be observed at "playdates" and wrote essays describing his strengths and challenges.

In the end, we were fortunate, and Josh was accepted to our first-choice school-even though, as we learned later, there were over two hundred applications for thirty spots (most of which went to siblings of students already at the school).

After helping countless other parents navigate their pre­school search on the basis of my experience, my research, and the advice I'd received, I decided to pull all of the information together into a book to benefit other parents of soon-to-be preschoolers. I hope to demystify the process for those who don't have access to all the mommy lore from knowledgeable friends and family.

Whether the preschools in your town enroll every child that signs up or are so competitive that they can accept only a few applicants each year, this book will give you the tools you need to find, research, and choose the best programs for your child. You will learn about the different types of preschool philosophies and know how to put your best foot forward when applying to selective schools that can't admit every ap­plicant. This book will also give you practical advice on how to help your child prepare for his or her first preschool experi­ence and have a great first day.

Preschool is the first step in your child's educational journey. I hope that with this book as your guide, you'll be able to find the school that works best for your family, and you will start your child on a lifelong adventure of learning and discovery.

"About this title" may belong to another edition of this title.

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