Parents may sometimes feel a little worried that they are starting their kids on the educational rat race a little too early.
We wonder if we are being kiasu – or afraid to lose out, in Singlish. But that mindset mainly takes into consideration the type of enrichment class that is laser-focused on academics and results, and is not at all enjoyable for your child.
What about enrichment programmes for preschoolers that nurture talent and provide a fun, engaging learning environment?
Why do parents enrol their 4-year-olds in enrichment classes?
Research has proven that young children benefit greatly from high-quality preschool education, as they are more likely to have higher IQs and higher earning capacity as they grow up.
Enrichment classes serve as a booster for your child’s preschool education. As the name suggests, an enrichment class should add flavour and spice to a child’s learning journey, and make it much more interesting.
Here, we outline some benefits of sending your 4-year-old to enrichment classes that are specifically designed for their age group:
1. Unlock your children’s hidden talents
Enrichment classes can be a fabulous avenue for nurturing and exploring your children’s natural skills.
Does your child stare longingly at the big kids who skate and cycle in the park? Does he copy all the latest K-pop dance moves as he walks home from school? Is she a budding actor who perfectly nails all her lines in the preschool concert?
Your children could benefit from enrichment classes like music, drama or dance that stretch their talents and give them the opportunity to indulge in the activities they really enjoy – and may not have the chance to explore in school.
2. Reinforce your children’s learning
Some kids need a little bit more of a boost to stay on track in school, or would even relish the chance to explore on their own terms.
Chinese playgroups, for example, could be helpful in integrating learning with playtime, where children are able to use their Mother Tongue in an organic setting as they interact with their friends and facilitators. On the other hand, a reading programme can help to nourish the desire and keenness in your child to develop a love for reading.
Classes like these serve as partners alongside your children’s preschool to reinforce learning and give them leeway to grow academically.
3. Overcome obstacles to learning
One great reason how enrichment classes could benefit your child is that it can help them overcome any issues they may have in a typical classroom setting.
A drama and theatre programme, for example, can be wonderful for shy kids who need a bit of a nudge to break out of their shells. Furthermore, music and dance classes are scientifically proven to accelerate brain development in young children, especially in the areas that handle speech and language development. In fact, the MindChamps Reading Programme makes use of songs, rhymes and poems to boost phonemic awareness, killing two birds with one stone.
Learning in a traditional environment does not have to be dull and serious. With appropriate classes, your children’s learning can certainly be enriched holistically while leaving smiles on their faces.
Written by JoBeth Williams