Parents are often overwhelmed when it comes to choosing the right afterschool program for their child. Many afterschool programs sound wonderful, but may not necessarily tick all the boxes or be a right fit for your child and family.
Knowing what questions to ask, and understanding the enormous benefits to a child attending the right afterschool facility, will help parents make the right choice.
The Benefits Of An Afterschool Program
Children of any age will benefit from attending a certified and well-run afterschool program. They are kept busy and engage in activities that normal school settings don’t often allow for. Some of the areas they will benefit in include:
Doing schoolwork or homework in a more relaxed and informal setting often helps the child understand work that they may not have been able to grasp in the classroom environment. Afterschool programs are geared to making learning fun, and most children often learn and understand better in a smaller, more relaxed setting.
Developing Social Skills
Children in afterschool programs mix and socialize with peers and other adults that they would not normally come into contact with, so they learn to communicate and socialize in a relaxed environment. Many new friends are made in an afterschool program setting.
The programs normally include games where children have to team up and work together to achieve a goal, encouraging even the most introvert child to participate. Qualified teachers are trained to ensure that all children feel included and comfortable.
New Interests Are Explored & Talents Are Developed
Children in afterschool programs are exposed to various activities and that gives them the ideal opportunity to explore and develop talents and skills. Many parents have reported on how even the shyest children have grown in confidence and developed leadership skills they would not have explored if not in an afterschool program.
Children Play Outdoors
Most afterschool programs limit screen time and encourage outdoor activities where possible. Running, climbing, jumping, and simply breathing fresh air all play a vital role in a child’s physical development and mental health.
Teachers use any opportunity to impart knowledge, and while outdoors children are also taught to appreciate nature and the environment, both very important skills that will offer them many opportunities to relax and unwind even as adults.
Ten Questions Parents Should Ask When Looking For An Afterschool Program
Not all aftercare programs are run well, so as a parent you need to know what questions you should be asking before considering enrolling your child in aftercare. Some non-negotiable questions that should be answered are:
- Is the facility licensed as an Afterschool Program facility? What curriculum do they follow?
- What is the adult to child ratio? The younger the age group, the smaller the adult to child ratio should be.
- Are the teachers all properly screened, certified, and trained? The teachers should have the appropriate qualifications for the age group they are teaching, and all teachers should have un up to date certification in First Aid.
- Are the grounds and classrooms spacious and clean, and are the toys and equipment well maintained, non-toxic, and age-appropriate?
- Is the facility fully enclosed and secure? What steps are taken to prevent strangers from entering the premises?
- Are the meals served approved by a dietitian, healthy, and well balanced? Are specific allergies noted and healthy alternatives provided?
- Are hazardous substances properly stored and out of the children’s reach?
- Are teachers trained in the storage and administration of medication?
- What is their drop-in policy? How do they communicate with the parents and do they encourage parent-teacher interaction?
- Do they have a secure drop-off and pick-up policy?
Providence Children’s Academy, The Afterschool Program Of Choice In Coconut Creek
If you are looking for a family orientated afterschool facility, where the children’s physical, personal, social, and emotional wellbeing is our primary goal, and all activities are geared to be exciting and educational, contact Providence Children’s Academy 954-570-6914 today.