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  1. #1
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    Default Preschool or just daycare?

    Hey everyone. Just wanting to know what you have done and your opinions.

    DS currently attends daycare 3 days a week. They have a preschool program as such, he absolutely loves it there and enjoys going every day.

    We didn’t bother signing him up for preschool as we weren’t sure it was worth it. Now I’m not so sure? Is preschool worth it? Did your children attend preschool as well as daycare? What do they do differently to a daycare centre? Do you feel it’s necessary to do preschool before school?

    Any info would be great please.

    Thanks!

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    Personally I prefer the stand alone kindy/preschool over daycare run kindy/preschool programs. Technically they are the same, educators have the same qualifications etc but I found the stand alone programs seem more structured and promote school readiness. By structured, they are still play based and very much child led in regards to what they learn about, but I found the daycare centres a lot more relaxed in how they approach things and no different to any other daycare program for younger groups, doesn't seem to have the same school readiness level. Hope that makes sense! The benefit of long daycare programs though is the hours. Here, a stand alone Kindy is generally 8.30 to 2.30 or there abouts, while at a daycare centre you have the option of using the centres extended hours (I believe the Kindy program though is still run between similar hours to stand alone places). Also, Kindy at stand alone centres is generally a 5 day fortnight, with groups attending Monday and Tuesday and every second Wednesday while the other group attends every Thurs and Fri and every other Wednesday. Obviously at a daycare centre you would have the option of 5 day weeks. Although, some stand alone kindys now offer 5 day weeks too, but you can only claim the CCS on the standard 5 day fortnight hours. Stand alone centres also tend to have the same holidays as schools while daycare centres obviously remain open.

    I definitely think it's beneficial to give them a year or 2 of kindy/preschool before school. And every teacher I've spoken to says you can tell the difference between a child who has attended (whether it be at a daycare or stand alone centre) and a child who hasn't.

    Dd1 attended a daycare run Kindy program, we changed her to a stand alone program and the difference was phenomenal which is a shame because they are supposed to be the same. Our other children have all attended stand alone centres from as soon as they reach the age of starting Kindy, before that they attend daycare centres.

    I should add, I'm in qld so not sure what other states are like.

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    Yogis Mumma (16-02-2019)

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    My DS has just started at kinder (4yo kinder) at his daycare centre and i love it.
    He comes home every night and tells me new “rules” he’s learned. I find it very structured in terms of what they do and when.
    Because he was in daycare 5 days a week I didn’t bother with a specific pre kinder program as daycare was great.
    It think it must depend on the centre and how they operate. I also love that even though they run 3 days from 8.45 - 1.45, I can still use before and after kinder care in the same place.

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    Default Preschool or just daycare?

    My dd1 did “ preschool” only through daycare 2 days a week for 2 years prior to starting school and she was totally fine

    There was a lack of stand alone preschools in our area, always full with priority given to those who were disadvantaged or didn’t attend daycare, so I didn’t even bother trying to get her in, found it wasn’t needed, and will do the same with dd2.

    Eta: and I mean by preschool at daycare that she was in the preschool room lol

    I asked one of the experienced (and honest) carers if I needed to increase up from 2 days or find a preschool and she said she felt it wasn’t necessary and didn’t really make a difference, it was more whether a child was mature enough to handle school and they would adjust fine
    Last edited by Little Miss Sunshine; 15-02-2019 at 18:15.

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    Hi i dont have personal experience but i am friends with preschool teachers and childcare workers and they tell me there is a difference in that pre-school is exactly that 'preparation for school'. Although we dont have day care centres that offer preschool classes if that makes sense. They are 2 separate campuses. They have both told me it is beneficial to go to preschool before starting kindy.

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    DS went to daycare kindy/prep/pre-school. In our centre they definitely focussed on school readiness. Not only with what they were learning but they were using a 'bell' for fruitbreak, morning tea and lunch (just like school). They read loads of books about school. They had to be more independent with lunches etc.
    So if you are happy where he is I would keep him there.

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    I've had kids who have done both.
    First only did daycare as I worked full time, wasnt a problem, she transitioned well into school.
    Others did preschool and wasnt a problem, they transitioned well into school.
    The only difference was daycare they are surrounded by children who can range in age from 3-5 whereas preschool they are usually ALL have already turned 4 with the occasional 5 year old.
    So long as they are learning to share, take turns, cooperate with others... that is all it is really about. Anything else is icing on the cake.

    I say this having been both a preschool teacher (we call it Kindergarten in Vic) and teaching in the first 3 years of primary school.

    The only kids who 'stand out' negatively, usually behaviour wise, in the first year of school are those who have not been to preschool/ kindergarten (depending on the state you're in) or have never been to any form of childcare. They still catch up socially, eventually.

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    I would personally leave him where he is - he’s happy and settled.

    We did preschool with DS 3 days a week the year before he started primary school. It was great for DS, but there are cons like the hours (runs only between 9:00 and 3:00pm), only runs school terms (difficult if you work) and you can’t get rebates from the government like you would for daycare, so it was expensive (it was a financial stretch for us back then).

    I would probably do it the same if I had my time again though, as my DS has additional needs and was well supported with a full time aide. I’m not sure a daycare centre would have offered the same level of support and care.

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    Ds1 did both daycare and kindy (SA). 1 day at daycare & 2.5 at kindy. I dropped him at 845 for 9am start & my folks picked him up at 3 as I finished at 5pm. Kindy didn’t start til 9 but I paid as extra $2 per day to leave him there 15 mins early but it more like 20 mins. Cost wise it was $130 a term so cheaper then daycare and in school
    Holidays I just requested as extra day at daycare for him and my folks had him the other days. I’ll do the same for Ds2 & dd in a couple years

  12. #10
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    Thanks everyone! I have been so busy I haven’t had a chance to read everything so I will.

    I think we are still leaning towards staying in just daycare but once I’ve read responses I’ll talk with df.


 

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