Playgroup Woodlands: Should I Send my Child to a Playgroup?

A playgroup is a setting where your child gets to make friends. It’s also a place where kids get their first exposure to the world at large and learn things like how to share and play well with others. See what a typical day at a playgroup in Woodlands feels/looks like on this page: https://ourfirststeps.com.sg/admiralty/.

There are other benefits, too: Your child will be exposed to different age groups and types of kids (and adults) in a safe, structured play environment. Playgroups can give you greater insight into how your child interacts with others. You’ll get practice meeting new people—for both you and your little one. Most importantly, if done right, it can help build confidence in children under five years old through learning how to share toys or have conversations with newfound friends

When Should I enroll my Child in a Woodlands Playgroup?

Usually, the best time to send your child is when they can walk. The more comfortable they are with running around, the more fun they’ll have. A few more things that can help you know the child is ready to join a Woodlands playgroup include.

  • Being able to follow simple instructions: If your child is more likely to follow directions like “don’t touch that,” they are more likely to handle the playgroup environment.
  • Being able to communicate needs: If your child already knows ‘up’ and ‘down’ or ‘want water please,’ they will get even more out of joining a playgroup.
  • Being able to familiarize themselves with new surroundings: If your child can cope with changes in their daily routine, it’s more likely that they will enjoy the new setting.

What is the Best Way to Find a Good Playgroup for my Child?

Being able to find the best Woodlands playgroup for your child may sound daunting at first, but it really shouldn’t be. When choosing a group for your child, look for these six qualities:

  1. The coordinator should be well experienced and certified: You don’t want to leave your child in the hands of someone who doesn’t know what he or she is doing. The group coordinator should have qualifications that show their experience and knowledge of how to handle children at playgroup.
  2. The group should be well run: A good Woodland’s playgroup will have a schedule, clearly stated rules for behavior and toys, clear limits on the number of kids allowed in the room (usually no more than 12 per day), and expectations for parents to participate in their child’s development.
  3. The age range in the playgroup should be appropriate: Is it too young or too old? Check with your pediatrician or child development specialist about when your little one may be ready. If your child is younger than most other kids in the group, they may be overwhelmed. It’s also possible that their social skills could suffer because they’ll be trailing behind their peers developmentally. If your child is older than the other kids, they might feel like outsiders since everyone will have formed friendships.
  4. The group should have good communication: The group facilitator should answer questions you have clearly and promptly via email or phone call. When communicating with parents, it helps to use open-ended statements (e.g., “I really think Johnny would love our story time” versus “Johnny doesn’t want to come to story time”). It’s important that the parents are comfortable with how information is communicated for them to feel confident about sending their children to the playgroup.
  5. The group should offer more than just free play: good groups provide opportunities and support for children to develop their social, academic, and emotional skills. A good mix of adult-led and child-directed activities ensue, allowing children to gain the most from their time with other kids. Groups with plenty of stickers, blocks, markers, and art paper will be popular with the younger set. Older kids might enjoy outings to parks or nature centers where they can explore nature safely.
  6. It’s best if your child has a friend in attendance: Having a friend there who is familiar helps minimize shyness at first. Once your kid knows they can rely on their buddy during drop-offs and pick-ups, they’ll be more willing to play with other kids as well.

 What are the Risks or Disadvantages Associated with Sending my Child to a Group Setting? 

Babies and toddlers go through different stages of growth and development with learning through trial and error being one of them. Sometimes there can be risks involved when they’re placed in situations that encourage them to experiment. When your child does not attend a playgroup or daycare environment where there is adult supervision, they will run the risk of exploring dangerous objects that could cause injury. 

Playing with matches, kitchen knives, electrical outlets, and other potentially unsafe toys could have severe consequences if your little one decides to explore by himself. In general, it’s best for children to gain social skills from being exposed to peers without too much risk of being injured.   You can significantly reduce the risks of your child suffering injuries during play sessions by ensuring that you find a Woodlands playgroup that emphasizes the quality of the toys and less on the quantity of them.

What if I my Child don’t like their teacher?

It’s true that most kids do fine when they go to a daycare or playgroup environment for a few hours each day. However, that doesn’t mean that your child is going to be happy with every single one of his teachers. 

Finding a good setting for your kid means taking time to find out who teaches where and making sure you’re comfortable with their qualifications. Most reputable preschools have group leaders who are certified early childhood educators, have degrees in psychology or social work, training in mentoring children, CPR certifications, etc. Bottom line: research the credentials of all staff members before enrolling your child in a group setting.

Final Words

The benefits of sending your child to a playgroup far outweigh the potential risks. It’s best to ensure that the group is safe by avoiding free play sessions where there are dangerous objects lying around. 

A good group facilitator will provide plenty of social interaction, coordinated activities, and classroom management opportunities. OFS is an established playgroup designed for kids as young as two months old. Our teachers are early childhood professionals who monitor each child on a one-to-one basis to ensure an optimal play experience. For more information on how our playgroups can benefit your child, please don’t hesitate to give us a call. We’ll be happy to chat with you about how we can help! Email greenwich@ourfirststeps.com.sg or call 8870 1513 today!

 

First Steps Preschool @ Admiralty

701 Woodlands Drive 40, Singapore 730701

+65 6365 6535

https://ourfirststeps.com.sg/admiralty/

 

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