Fresno County's Superintendent of Schools, Larry Powell, says the primers for education boil down to four simple things: a sense of significance, competence, virtue, and power. "If a parent can install these 4 qualities in their children when they get to school, they will survive all kinds of difficulties during school."
Once these foundations are laid for our kids, Powell says the sky's the limit. But as we get them ready for kindergarten, there are a few more things to remember. Powell says learning should be fun, not a laundry list of arduous tasks. "Let's make sure they think school is fun so they anticipate having a good time, because you're priming the pump for learning as a parent when you do that."
Liz Romero is a coordinator at the Willow International Community College Child Development Center. She says the learning standards are generally higher for preschoolers these days. Kids need to have a better sense of reading and writing, and in some cases, math. But we need to remember, kids are like sponges, and liz says they can handle it. "The time of, in kindergarten, of naps and snacks and playtime and learning to tie your shoes, that's out the window. That's what preschool now is. So children that don't go to preschool can be at a disadvantage."
Another thing to remember is that kids are generally optimistic. So when you infuse innovation and creativity into the learning process, Superintendent Powell says the long term benefits will be even greater. Kids will have a greater sense of accomplishment when a task is complete. Powell says they'll remember that it was fun. "At the end of high school, I want them to be able to go to trade school, work, or college. It's their choice and we prepared them for that and that starts in preschool and kindergarten."