Preschool vs. Pre-k

Discussion in 'Preschool' started by KinderFrogs, Jun 9, 2009.

  1. KinderFrogs

    KinderFrogs New Member

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    Jun 9, 2009

    So the preschool class that I am observing does art everyday as its small group instruction in the morning. The Prek does the same type of schedule and completes an art activity during its small group instruction time in the morning so what is the difference between the preschool and prek room besides age? Also, my second question is....I know it is appropriate for preschool children to be painting with different materials, is that appropriate for 4-5 year olds as well or do they not do a lot of painting in pre-k?
     
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  3. Mommyserenity

    Mommyserenity Devotee

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    Jun 9, 2009

    Depends on the program set up, but I know the PreK programs I have taught in run very much like kindergarten in their expectations. We did centers for reading, spelling, writing, and math. We also did computers and specials. By the end of our PreK programs, many of our students were doing full on kindergarten work.
     
  4. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Jun 10, 2009

    "Pre-K" is usually more academic and focuses on getting ready for K. "Preschool" is usually more play-based. Or, generally, that's how it works around here. Each area may be different, however, and it may depend on the school - there may, indeed, be no difference other than the age of the students (Pre-K kids being 4-5, while the preschool kids are closer to 3-4).
    kim
     
  5. kimrandy1

    kimrandy1 Enthusiast

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    Oh, about painting - I think it's appropriate for kids to experiment with painting well into Kindergarten, even.
    Kim
     
  6. vannapk

    vannapk Groupie

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    Your question is a very good one! The definitions of preschool vs pre-k are currently very muddy in the U.S. Because there is no uniformity in ECE nationwide it makes it very difficult to define one or the other or even compare them. What defines one preschool program could be totally different from what defines another one right next door and the same goes for pre-k. The word preschool could be used to describe any program that serves children ages 2-5and Pre-K generally refers to the year before a child enters kindergarten, typically for four year olds who are turning 5. Pre-kindergarten generally implies more of a focus on academics. The types of things children generally (notice how I keep using that word?) learn in pre-k are letter identification, number identification, writing their name etc.

    imo painting is always appropriate for any child regardless of age.

    So, I'm afraid I didn't answer your question very well but at least now you are as confused as the rest of us- welcome :D
     
  7. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    I know I am confused! I would love for someone to identify unilateral uses for these terms. Ever notice how we as a field can't even agree on how to do these things-like academics/play based, hands on/teacher lead/child directed/exploratory. whew
     
  8. csand5s

    csand5s New Member

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    As confusing as it is I like having options. As a parent I have 3 very different boys. Having options allowed me to introduce each of them to the world of academics in a way that was individually challenging yet enjoyable.
     
  9. Terri in CA

    Terri in CA Rookie

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    Jun 10, 2009

    The bigest term confusion we have around here is day care, child care, and preschool. The Licensing agency in CA calls anything that cares for children ages birth to Kinder child care. Day Care is an old term that is slowly going away though here. So the confusion comes up when a parent "thinks" you are a day care, when you are really a preschool. just my 2 cents.
     
  10. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Would that no full day program would ever be able to be a preschool though?* Just wondering?* This is where it gets rocky.
     
  11. KarenPreK

    KarenPreK Companion

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    Jun 10, 2009

    I find myself using the terms preschool & Pre-K synonymously sometimes, but in general I think "Pre-K" should mean the year before Kindergarten.

    I think every child should have the opportunity to paint & do art every day, but in Pre-K it shouldn't be the only thing they do. I think Pre-K programs should be well-rounded, including art, math, science, literacy, fine motor, sensory experiences, and of course social skills.
     
  12. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Jun 10, 2009

    Myboss has a fit if she hears someone refer to us as a day c are! She tells them politely-- I'm sorry, I think yu are confusd. Here we care for CHILDREN, and the DAY takes care of itself! LOL. I currently teach preschool and we go by the goas and aobjectives for the age we have-- I have 3s , I am considered early preschool. the next class up is the early 4s they are preschool and the Pre-K clas is generally later 4s -- the children who will be old enought o go to kider the following year. Each class is progressive in skills and academics, then of course there is the kindergarten
     
  13. sarzacsmom

    sarzacsmom Groupie

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    Jun 10, 2009

    As for the painting-- I think it's appropriate for chidlren of all ages to be experimenting with all sorts of painting techniques and mediums
     
  14. CFClassroom

    CFClassroom Connoisseur

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    Jun 11, 2009

    Children at that age can often do the same tasks. They will just look different in the end because of developmental levels.
     
  15. Rebel1

    Rebel1 Connoisseur

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    Jun 11, 2009

    The program determines what each age group should be doing and they have lesson plans that states so.
    There is a PUSH of ACADEMICS in a lot of the Pre-Schools that they tend to forget that these little children are there to have fun, play and learn to get along with other human beings. By the time some of these little children get to Pe-K or even K, they are burned out OF WORK! They get bored and start to act up. As soon as Pre-schools forget what they are supposed to be "REALLY" helping the children with in order for them to grow in all aspects of their lives, THEN they have failed.
    Pre-Kindergarten is mainly a PREPARATION for Kindergarten. All the stuff they learn will be repeated in KINDERGARTEN and they should be introduced to them in a FUN, COOL and ENJOYABLE way. There are other things to learn besides just the academics and teachers need to remember that.
    Pre-K ROCKS!
    Rebel1
     
  16. KinderFrogs

    KinderFrogs New Member

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    Jun 11, 2009

    Thanks!

    Thank you everyone...each of your replies really helped. I appreciate everyone who wrote back :)
     
  17. teacherR

    teacherR Companion

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    Jun 12, 2009

    Amen Rebel1. I think that kids of all ages should have an opportunity to do art and paint. To often we focus on literacy and math and forget all of the other subjects. Some children will not grow up to be writers or mathematicians. Some will actually grow up to be artist. One of my children spent 90% of her time at the easel this year and she learned just as much as the other kids. Not to mention the art she produced was amazing!!
     
  18. WaProvider

    WaProvider Fanatic

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    Jun 12, 2009

    I know this isn't the CC thread--but when I started the progressive move toward that sort of room I enjoyed the mental leap it gave me trying to think of how to get the things that we were learning in the room to be important to your child who spent 90% of the day at the easle. I liked that added linking. So did my children who needed those learning styles. It can be done outside of CC---that is just where I was in my life when I found the links.
     

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