I don't always get soap boxy, but I feel so very strongly about this issue. I was recently reading an article that describes how "twisted" early childhood education has become. Preschools have increasingly moved away from what is appropriate for children that age. Preschools are including more and more desk work and drill in order to help kids "prepare" for kindergarten and they are taking out the essential hands on, sensory, play based learning. It is not what children that age need. It is depriving them of important development. Studies of brain development support the need for active learning and many preschool classrooms are depriving them of that opportunity. Here's a quote from the article.
"So never in my wildest dreams could I have foreseen the situation we find ourselves in today.
Where education policies that do not reflect what we know about how young children learn could be mandated and followed. We have decades of research in child development and neuroscience that tell us that young children learn actively — they have to move, use their senses, get their hands on things, interact with other kids and teachers, create, invent. But in this twisted time, young children starting public pre-K at the age of 4 are expected to learn through “rigorous instruction.”
And never in my wildest dreams could I have imagined that we would have to defend children’s right to play."
This is why I teach the way I do and why I have chosen not to put my kids in other classrooms. "Play is the primary engine of human growth."
Preschool should be fun and full of play. Your children will have 13 years of sitting at a desk, doing worksheets, and being still for hours on end. When considering where your child should go to preschool, don't deprive them of some of the last moments they might have to learn about the world through exploration.
Please take a minute to read this article and consider carefully where your child attends preschool. Don't enroll them in a classroom that doesn't take your child's right to play seriously.