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Is your child really ready for preschool?

Parents should analyze whether their child is ready for the big leap into the world of education or not before sending them to preschool.

Written by Editorial Team |Updated : March 20, 2015 5:53 PM IST

kid preschoolExperts have suggested that parents should analyze whether their child is ready for the big leap into the world of education or not before sending them to preschool.

Parents India Magazine has compiled a list of things parents can do to check their child's readiness to go preschool.

First of all, the child's anxiety to stay away from parents for a few hours is a major indicator that the time is not right to send him away.

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If the child suffers from the anxiety of separation, then you can help him or her by increasing the separation time slowly and consistently.

A parent should be able to identify the child's ability to follow simple orders like 'come here', 'go there' and 'sit down', to determine his or her readiness. (Read: New-age parenting: Understand your adolescent better!)

Also if a child uses the toilet by himself then he is ready to go to preschool.

How important is it to have a parent around during childhood?

Answered by Dr Leena Deshpande, a developmental paediatrician.

In a world where money rules and financial concerns predominate one can't be just sitting at home the whole day. Thus, the mother is forced to return to work, sooner rather than later, reluctantly handing the above duties/activities in some measure to the grandparents or maids or babysitters or nannies. The toddler who is forever active realises that the grandparents cannot keep up with their energy levels as the parents. The maid is more engrossed in work and cannot devote more than a token display of time and activity to the child. Parents returning from work are exhausted and while the basic necessities may be provided for, the stimulating atmosphere to help a child develop or grow may not be suitably provided.

However, that does not always push the argument in favour of a parent not working outside the home. A mother who stays at home may also be busy at home, especially in a nuclear family and the jet-setting pace of the city that she tends to use TV or other e-media as babysitters to entertain the child while she continues finishing her 'work'. This can lead to a severe detrimental effect on the child's behaviour, concentration and development.

So, yes, having a responsive and stimulating adult around the child in formative years is nothing short of priceless. This may be the mother but could be the father also as any interested, interactive adult can help in optimizing the child's development.

But more importantly, it is not mere physical presence but the quality of time spent with the child that matters. Even if both parents are working, as long as they set aside quality time to spend with their child, there is no reason to believe that there will be a detrimental effect on the growth, personality and development. This quality time should be uninterrupted by TV, mobiles or e media.

There is nothing set in stone or gold about how a parent should behave or what is ideal. Each set of parents has to approach this individually and be able to work out what is best for their set of circumstances. What is ideal may not be practical but what is workable can be made as close to ideal as possible!! (Read: How important is it to have a parent around during childhood?)

With inputs from ANI

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