Preschool education has become an important learning milestone for children.
If Preschooling was not a serious business, a company like FlintBox would not have invested in designing specially engaging activity material for kids between the age group of 2-4 years and beyond. Many schools are already making use of such predone learning equipment to gainfully engage young children at preschools and daycares.
Additionally, what has started at the preschool level, is being replicated in kindergarten and more so in our home spaces. Informs Mrs. Nandita Gupta, a child psychologist and private practitioner, “The attention span of a child is far less than what we had when we were young. It is therefore, very important at preschool age, to engage them in activities, that help use their energy in a constructive manner.”
Some of the best known preschools today include Smart Kidz, Podar Jumbo, Sunshine Preschool, Indus Early Learning Centre, Shemrock Preschool, The Treehouse Play School, Pebbles Pre-School and Leapbridge International Pre-School.
Every young one’s choice
The preschooler ideally comprises kids from the age group of 2 to 6 years. At the moment, working parents in nuclear set-ups are gunning for preschool facilities, as safe havens for their little ones. So, some schools also cater to day care facilities for toddlers.
General activities comprise crafts that are incorporated in detailed lesson plans along with fun activities. These cater to the development of gross motor skills, speech clarity, cognitive abilities and learning about our surroundings for toddlers, preschoolers and kindergarten. Many preschools also look after the nutritional needs of the children and relieve the parent from the daily hanging and spending energy on developing social habits like table manners, social eating, proper posture etc. All this and much more, has become a part of the curriculum of Preschools.
Soft Skill Enhancement
The Preschooling business is an excellent choice for many trained professionals and women who want to be the master of their own establishments. No wonder, this segment today attracts huge investments from private players as entry barriers here are low. This has been possible because the target audience (the young parent) now understands the importance of Preschool education, in the formative years of their child.
Hectic work schedules and demands of intercity work has gradually seen the doing away of the traditional joint family system which used to guarantee the most healthy and conducive learning-growing environment for a toddler. Today, the Preschool has filled in the gap. It has become an ideal playfield to enhance a child’s emotional and intellectual growth, in the absence of the joint family system.
Most Preschools also invest in conducting positive parenting workshops. This is because they understand the need for making the parent as much a custodian for their child’s development, as much as they hold themselves ‘serious and committed’. This is more so because this age-group of children need careful, patient and gentle handling. Therefore, a confluence between the caregiver and parent is of paramount importance.
There are some unavoidable challenges. One is that the model is not cost effective till it reaches a break-even point, which usually takes 5 years from the start of the business. So, the proprietor has to have large coffers. Secondly, the expectations of parents are at times, extremely unrealistic and mostly driven by emotion. So, there may be gaps in what is promised and what can actually be delivered. Thirdly, attrition rate of skill labour is a major challenge in India. There is huge lack of skilled teachers; and even if you have them skilled, the pays are usually not attractive enough to keep them engaged and involved for a longer time. This creates a huge imbalance in the emotional equilibrium of a preschool, when a child may start closely identifying with a teacher who isn’t there anymore.
Preschooling is no more a luxury and definitely, considered the very foundation of a child’s formal education.