“Children learn as they play. Most importantly, in play children learn how to learn.”O. Fred Donaldson
Four-year-old Kindergarten or Second year of kindergarten, is a unique play-based learning program designed for four-year-old children who will turn four by the 30th of April.
This program is delivered by a qualified early childhood teacher in the year before the children are eligible to commence primary school.
Additionally, it is provided as part of a sessional Kindergarten program and can also be incorporated into a Long Day Care Program. Groups will vary in size, up to a maximum of 33 children with a 1:11 staff/child ratio.
12 Benefits of Four-Year-Old Kindergarten
A four-year-old kindergarten (or preschool) program offers several benefits to children as they prepare for formal schooling. Some of the key advantages include:
1) School Readiness
Four-year-old kindergarten helps children develop the skills they need to succeed in a formal school environment. They learn to follow routines, listen to instructions, and engage in age-appropriate activities.
2) Social and Emotional Development
Kindergarten programs offer a structured social environment where children can interact with their peers. They learn important social skills like sharing, turn taking, and cooperating. These experiences can help them develop emotional intelligence and build healthy relationships.
3) Improved Communication Skills
In kindergarten, children have opportunities to express themselves through language, group time, art, and play. This helps improve their verbal communication skills, vocabulary, and ability to articulate their thoughts and feelings.
4) Cognitive Development
Kindergarten programs engage children in activities that stimulate cognitive development. They learn problem-solving skills, critical thinking, and creativity through play-based learning.
5)Independence and Self-Confidence
Kindergarten encourages children to become more independent. They learn to make choices, solve problems, and take on tasks with confidence, which prepares them for the increased autonomy required in formal school settings.
6) Physical Development
Kindergarten programs frequently incorporate art, music, and physical play, fostering the development of both fine and gross motor skills in children. These skills are essential for tasks like writing, drawing, and participating in physical activities.
7) Diversity and Inclusion
Kindergarten classrooms often bring together children from diverse backgrounds. This exposure to different cultures and perspectives promotes tolerance, acceptance, and an understanding of diversity from an early age.
8) Boost in Curiosity and Creativity
Preschool environments encourage curiosity and creativity through exploration and imaginative play. Children are given opportunities to ask questions, make discoveries, and express themselves creatively.
9) Smooth Transition to Primary School
A year of four-year-old kindergarten can help ease the transition to the first year of primary school known as Foundation or Prep. Children become more familiar with school routines, which can reduce anxiety about starting school.
10) Early Identification of Learning Challenges
Kindergarten teachers can often identify any learning or developmental challenges early on, allowing early intervention and support.
11) Parent Involvement
Many kindergarten programs encourage parental involvement. This can help parents stay informed about their child’s progress, build a stronger connection with the school, and become active participants in their child’s education.
12) Fun and Enjoyment
Most importantly, four-year-old kindergarten is intentionally designed to be fun and enjoyable. As a result, it helps children develop a positive attitude toward learning, school, and education in general.
Last but not least, all children are eligible to access a free kindergarten program for 15 hours per week for 40 weeks in the year. For more information on free kindergarten, please visit https://www.vic.gov.au/give-your-child-the-best-start-in-life
We hope this information assists you in making an informed decision regarding your child’s educational journey.