kids

Three things to look for when choosing who educates your under-fives.

C&K - Childcare & Kindergarten
Thanks to our brand partner, C&K - Childcare & Kindergarten

There’s nothing like parental instinct to guide us in the great unknown world of parenting.

We can do as much research on a topic as possible, speak to everyone we know, and still, every time, we will ‘go with our gut’.

This is especially the case when it comes to one of the biggest decisions we must make on behalf of our kids: how, and where, to introduce them to education.

In Australia, we’re so lucky with lots of early childhood choices – which, as many parents will agree, kind of makes it harder.

Even though you’ll ultimately use your instinct as the deciding factor, before that, what are the important must-haves when it comes to choosing a childcare or kindergarten?

Of course, it depends on the individual child. But in 2019, these three basic things make a huge difference to a kid’s first out-of-home educational experience:

1. Educators who know what they’re doing and want to do more than keep kids ‘busy’.

Any parent knows that kids need constant stimulation (I certainly do!). We don’t want to just keep them “busy” – we want them to explore and engage.

So, we want to send our kids into an environment where this is a number one priority. Preschools do this in different ways, but ultimately, it’s all in the approach of the educators.

Take C&K childcare centres and kindergartens, for example. C&K has been operating early childhood centres since 1907, and has more than 350 around Queensland– so it knows what it’s doing.

The teachers are all university qualified and they’ve chosen this career for the love of guiding and supporting kids to be curious, capable and confident learners for life.

Rather than simply entertaining or occupying kids, the educators at these centres challenge kids with a proper pre-school foundation.

If that sounds a little intense, don’t worry; how they do that is through what’s known as ‘play-based learning’ (more on that later).

At C&K, its early childhood education curriculum was developed with extensive research, and consultation with experts and parents, with the prime intention of offering the best way to teach and learn right from birth through to school age. It’s a universally acclaimed program with play at its heart, while educators also take the approach of “slowing down” to be present with kids as they explore.

As a parent, that’s exactly who you want your kids to spend their time with – and it’s even better if there is proper program to help them do it.

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2. A centre that practises ‘play-based learning’.

Anyone who was ever a kid (yes, all of us) would remember how tedious school could be in a rigid environment – especially in the junior years.

And most parents would recognise in their own pre-schoolers a preference for activities to express their curiosity.

The great thing is, these days, teaching has evolved way beyond the traditional wooden desk and chalkboard classroom; and play-based learning, learning through interactive and creative activities, is now recognised as the most effective method, rather than a strict academic approach.

Kids need space and time to explore, be curious, take risks and be challenged, while using problem-solving and letting their imaginations come alive. In places like C&K, they can do all of that through music, art, reading, and experiments – often inspired by what they’re most interested in, because they’re encouraged to speak up as individuals.

3. A well-resourced centre with indoor and outdoor challenges.

If preschool is the stepping stone to school, then physical and emotional growth is a must, including developing skills which teach emotional resilience.

Which is why interactive experiences, both indoors and outdoors, are essential in helping kids understand their world, and be truly engaged with it.

The best childcare and kindergarten centres are designed, inside and out, factoring in healthy minds and bodies. They should have outdoor play spaces that encourage physical activity to develop skills, while the educators should be there to help kids to take appropriate risks and challenges, like climbing trees or working with tools.

It’s not all about running around outside, though. The great indoors can be of some use too. C&K promotes positive technology usage in what’s becoming an increasingly digital world around us. Digital activities at their centres focus on connecting with others (including having E-pen pals), research, creativity and problem solving. Then there’s also everything from learning about robots, to timing races on iPads.

The idea is that kids should be active, not passive users of technology. Many parents would agree that in 2019, that’s a realistic approach – and that the kids would love it, too.

You can trust your instincts on that one.

Come and experience a day at C&K! Visit your nearest C&K between 2 to 7 September 2019. For more information, visit C&K at www.candk.asn.au/openweek.

This content was brought to you with thanks to our brand partner, C&K Childcare and Kindergarten.

C&K - Childcare & Kindergarten

C&K – Childcare and Kindergartens, Early Learning Since 1907

Come and experience a day at C&K! Visit your nearest C&K between 2-7 September.
Let your child engage with our professional nurturing educators and see how their days will be filled with loving care and wonder.

Discover how our birth to three program focuses on slowing down and being with your child as they explore the world.

Speak to our teachers to see our how our accredited kindy programs for 3-5s are designed to spark your child’s curiosity, build confidence, and support them to be capable learners for life.

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