Choosing a Preschool in Central New York

Choosing a Preschool Program in Central New York

Locking down the very best early education experience for your 3-4-year-old is within reach.
Syracuse daycare professionals tailored a concise list of six key points to guide you from your top preschool options to landing upon a final decision.

1. Time Your Commute

How much time will travel to and from preschool tag onto your already busy day?
Although it wouldn’t hurt, you don’t necessarily have to physically get in your car to figure out the distance between you, work and preschool.  Map out your travel time in advance with free online tools. On average, parents have a 25- to 40-minute commute in Central New York, so consider a Syracuse preschool program that is convenient for your drive to work. Having easy access to highway 481, 81 or 690 is a priority for many working parents when choosing a preschool.

2. Pay Close Attention to What’s Inside and Outside

Does the preschool program include playtime for gross motor skills?
Not only scan the indoor spaces but the outside area as well. Does the Syracuse preschool have a fenced play area with age-appropriate playground equipment in good condition? It is essential for kids to move around to remain healthy, especially after sitting in circle lessons. What may look like recess is an opportunity for children to learn by sharing and taking turns, and how to interact with each other during indoor and outdoor free play time.


3.  Scope Out Program Options

Does this facility include full daycare?
Many centers have options for 2-hour preschool, half-day preschool or full day preschool that totals 5 hours. Working parents often prefer a preschool and childcare option that allows for an 8-hour workday plus travel time.  As you research preschools and weight the options, take a look at center-based Syracuse preschool programs that include care that fits your work schedule. 

4.  Review Syracuse Preschool Curriculum

How strong is the preschool curriculum?
Syracuse preschool professionals emphasize the importance of creating a solid learning foundation in your child’s early years to build lifelong cognitive skills for children. Does the curriculum meet New York State Prekindergarten Standards and Common Core Foundations?


5. Find out what Certifications the Teachers Have

Do the teachers’ backgrounds best qualify them to help shape your child’s learning patterns?
Choosing a Syracuse preschool is similar to a job interview. It’s ok to ask how long they have worked in early childhood education and about their college training.  Do the preschool teachers have New York State teaching certification? Do the teacher’s assistants have NY State Teacher’s Assistant certification? Find out if they participate in continuing education and their expertise in early childhood development. 

6. Schedule a Preschool Tour

Are the rooms equipped with tools, toys and visual stimulation for early learning?
Visiting a website is vastly different than visiting a Syracuse preschool. Not only is your chance to ask the five questions above that may not have been answered in your initial research, but it’s perfect for observation. Jot down little bullet points regarding the learning centers, calendar circle and other activities. Turn your attention to how the teachers and support staff interact with the children.


7. BONUS: Research Little Lukes Preschool

Little Lukes Preschool meets and exceeds the list above.
While there are several established preschool options in the Central New York area, Little Lukes Preschool and Childcare Center capitalizes on rich curriculum that focuses on school readiness, pre-reading, pre-writing, and math skills. The handcrafted syllabus is developed by teachers with Masters in Early Education. Open from 6:30 a.m. - 6:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, Little Lukes is the trusted parenting partner that excels in challenging kids through interesting and fun curriculum while also using extracurricular activities to strengthen interpersonal skills.
But conduct your own research to see what Little Lukes parents say to see if this Syracuse preschool is the right fit for your child.

Schedule a tour at Little Lukes today!