Different Preschool Teaching Methods and Techniques Used Worldwide

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Choosing a preschool can be confusing for new parents – who knew there were so many methods and techniques? But if you’ve done any digging into preschools at all, you know there are a lot of different styles educators use to teach children.

 

Main Preschool Models and Approaches/Different Schools of Thought

Let’s get up to speed on the popular methods of preschool learning.

1. Reggio Emilia Method

Self-directed learning is the hallmark of this method. Its philosophy is that a child’s personality takes root during their younger years while they are developing, and that they have many ways of expressing themselves and their ideas. These ways to express themselves could be anything from sculpting to painting.

Since allowing children to express themselves is a key component of this method, children in these preschools are given a say in the scope of their learning. They are allowed to move around, observe, touch things, and explore their relationships with other kids in the classroom.

2. Waldorf  Method

The focus of the Waldorf method isn’t strictly academics. Instead, it strives to develop well-rounded students who will be capable of finding the meaning in their lives. This discipline wants children to become independent thinkers.

As such, this method incorporates many disciplines into their curriculums, such as art, music, emotional, physical, and academic education. Reading is introduced later, and Waldorf schools don’t use books until the children are older and won’t introduce computers until high school.

3. Montessori Method

This method works on the principle that children are thirsty for knowledge – their minds are like little sponges ready to absorb all that learning if they have a conducive setting for it. You’ll find some variation in different Montessori schools, but some factors the American Montessori Society thinks are crucial include:

  • Long blocks of uninterrupted learning time, as much as three hours at a stretch.
  • Giving students a choice of activities out of an array of options.
  • Children of different ages in a classroom, usually within a three-year age range.
  • Opportunities to learn by discovery rather than through lectures or direct teaching. 

4. Play-Way Method

Kids love fun, and this preschool style uses playing as the educational method. They learn from playing or doing structured activities. While doing these activities, they are getting social benefits as well by interacting with their classmates and teachers.

This method can be a bit more fluid and less rigid than some of the others on this list. As such, it can be combined with other methods as well in classrooms. Since the focus is on fun playing and learning, children often enjoy this style of preschool.

5. Bank Street Method

The goal with this style is encouraging children to become lifelong learners. By getting children interested in their surroundings, such as the objects around them, places they see, and the people they interact with, it will spark a love of learning. Rather than just memorizing facts, children are given other ways to learn, such as puzzles, field trips, and blocks.

It isn’t competitive in this classroom – teachers encourage children to learn at their own pace and through interaction with their peers. Playing is one of the keys elements teachers use for learning.

Teachers try to touch on a subject through many disciplines. When children are playing with a toy kitchen set, teachers might be asking questions about food, stores, health, and could plan a field trip based off that play experience.

6. Co-op Preschools

If you’re the type of parent who likes to do hands-on work or feels more comfortable if there is a parent in on your child’s education program, co-op preschools might be for you. This is also a great option for parents who can’t afford the high price tag that comes with other programs.

Co-ops are run with parent volunteers, although there are still paid teachers in charge of the classroom. Parents serve as helping hands, where they can help with making and serving food, cleaning, and doing administrative work. That reduces the cost for the program.

Co-ops can be run using different disciplines, but many focus on learning through playing, rather than solely pursuing academic preparation.

7. Outdoor

If you think children are spending too much of their time inside and you fondly look back at your childhood days of exploring the great outdoors all day, the growing outdoor preschool movement might interest you.

These programs, which might last three or four hours, require that children spend all or most of their program time outside. Nature becomes their classroom.

The curriculum and methods of teaching may vary, but the key component is spending time outside.

8. HighScope

Active learning is the basis of HighScope preschools. By playing and their communications with others in the classroom, children will learn through their surroundings. They’ll work on academic skills as they also enhance their emotional and social development.

Teachers don’t take control – they are seen more as partners. They’ll hand out encouragement and be there to support kids as they work on problem solving.

9. STEM-Based

Some preschools put a high emphasis on helping children develop their STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) skills. Rather than asking students to solely memorize facts, STEM-based programs seek to create independent thinkers. Student will learn about problem-solving, asking questions, experimentation, and making observations.

While obviously this won’t be nearly as entailed as the STEM work done in elementary and junior high schools, the theory is that it gives children a good start.

No matter which method you choose, they will be learning something, and every lesson is a valuable one to their development.

 

Image Source: https://in.pinterest.com/pin/344806915192118583/

Source: https://parentingscope.com/different-preschool-teaching-methods-and-techniques-used-worldwide/

 

(This article/text/quote/image is shared in good spirit to strengthen the education system.)

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