The early years are the formative year’s in a child’s life. They are crucial for his physical, mental and social development. An early childhood education environment for nurturing a child’s age-appropriate skills can have lifelong benefits for your child.  A right preschool can just be that place for your child.

Parents are often debating about admitting their child to preschool vs skipping preschool before primary schooling. Or parents are not sure if their child should start preschool before a certain age. This post aims to help you to understand the benefits of preschool, including early childhood education, for your child.

What is Preschool

Preschool is a centre providing early childhood education (ECE) for kids in the age group of  1.5 – 6 years. It is often a play and fun based environment, which is crafted to stimulate learning and development in a child.

Preschool, also called the pre-primary school, is not a part of formal education in India. Instead, it facilitates a child’s transition to formal primary education. Preschool curriculum (age-appropriate activities) and pedagogy, provide an environment for a child’s individual and social development. It also eases separation anxiety. Thus preschool provides a bridge between home and formal schooling.

Is Preschool important

Benefit of preschool for a child


Preschools in India form part of non-formal education. Also there are no specific guidelines about the minimum age for starting a preschool or minimum years to be spent in one.

But these days, preschool plays a vital role in nurturing learning and development in a child. The early years are very crucial for the cognitive, social, physical, emotional and language development of a child [1]. Also, a right environment for early childhood education has long-term benefits for a child. Often preschool is such a conducive environment.

Preschools follow a certain curriculum and teaching techniques to create learning spaces and engaging activities for kids. Which aims to nurture a growing child physically, emotionally and socially. And eventually, prepare for primary schooling.

Though preschool is not mandatory in India, many primary schools require a child to complete  Nursery/Kindergarten. Primarily, to ensure a child is used to flexibly structured learning and is not overwhelmed by more extended school hours from class 1.

Early childhood education curriculum

Preschools may follow a single or integrated early childhood education based curriculum or develop their own. Preschools usually have well defined but flexible teaching technique and have a well-crafted approach to promote learning.

All children are different and bring their unique learning capabilities, strengths and limitations. Hence the preschool’s curriculum, teaching techniques and learning approach should be flexible to help every child develop age-appropriate physical, emotional, cognitive, language, and social skills with confidence.

In India, many preschools follow the Montessori curriculum. Waldorf or Reggio Emilia methodology of learning are becoming popular. Many schools may also design their curriculum inspired by different early learning methodology, their experience in early childhood education, or may incorporate various scientific learning theories.

Each curriculum and teaching/learning environment, eventually help build or promote certain traits. E.g. Montessori schooling fosters independence and learning at own pace [click here for more details]. Waldorf technique emphasis on imagination and creativity[click here for more details].

When selecting a preschool do understand their curriculum and teaching techniques [4]. Choose a learning environment suitable for your child’s personality and needs. It will lay the foundation for the personality your child eventually develops. Click here to read about choosing the right preschool for your child.

Benefits of Preschool

Preschool is not compulsory, but it offers various advantages. It provides benefit:

  • For a child
  • For parents
  • Towards transition to formal education

Benefits of Preschool for a child

Preschool provides toddlers with a milieu in preparation for future formal education. Preschool  helps a child to develop:

  • Social skills through interaction with peers & teachers
  • Cognitive skills through play, activities and learning sessions
  • Language skills through communication and interaction
  • Motor skills through age-appropriate play and activities
  • Concepts of sharing and discipline
  • Ability to make choices
  • Understanding of shapes, colours, sizes, numbers etc.
  • For primary school

A preschool thus acquaints a child to an atmosphere of learning, play, developing skills and socialising outside of home [2].

Benefits of Preschool for parents

Preschool also provides advantages to the parents like:

  • A secure, trained & accountable place for the child vs untrained maids/nanny at home
  • Option to resume work if on break due to childcare
  • Time for errands and other responsibilities
  • Get experienced and trained outsider’s view on child’s progress and challenges if any
  • A place for the child to mingle and learn with peers

For many families in urban India, preschool is becoming an increasingly preferred option. This is especially preferred over hiring babysitter/nanny,  who is mostly untrained to nurture the child.

Benefit of Preschool towards the transition to formal education

Many Indian schools have attached or affiliated preschool. They usually give preference to their preschoolers for admission to primary segment.

Some parents may be reluctant to consider formal school and related pre-school options at a very early stage. Which is perfectly okay and does not put a child at any disadvantage. However, the volume of applicants for primary admission is usually higher. Hence, choosing a preschool that eases the transition to primary school spares from uncertainty and grind of admission procedure later.


The physical, emotional and social development of a child happens in the early years of 0-8. A preschool, with a right early childhood education curriculum & teaching techniques, can provide your child with an environment conducive for his individual and social developments. Preschool also helps a child prepare for entry to primary school.

It is important to understand the curriculum and pedagogy of a preschool and its benefits and suitability for your child.