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Play based vs. Academic

When hearing of play based schools, one often jumps to the conclusion that a child will play and therefore not learn. Play based can also be seen as ‘child directed’ versus academic based which is often ‘teacher directed’. Both philosophies have children learning, but the environment and way learning is facilitated differs drastically.

Play based schools like SLC will have various centers set up in the room for children to explore. Teachers observe and facilitate positive social interactions while children can choose what interests them.

Academic schools have structured activities that usually have children seated and facing the teacher. Teachers lead activities where children are guided through lessons that often include worksheets and reciting.

When looking into preschools, it is important that parents understand that kindergarten readiness does not mean children need to know writing, reading, numbers, etc. Kindergarten readiness means children are ready to become life long learners while working with others. This means they understand basic social-emotional skills showing empathy, expressing their emotions, and working as a team.

To learn more about the difference between play based and academic preschools, please visit this link from PBS.