When it comes to things like daycare for kids, preschool and early education centres, it can get a little confusing regarding which option is best for you and your child and what these facilities offer. We often hear of daycare and preschool, but are they the same thing or not?
Is there a difference between daycare and preschool, for example?
Let’s take a closer look at childcare options such as daycare vs preschool and discover exactly what’s what, so you have a clearer picture and a greater understanding.
Daycare Caters To More Age Groups
When it comes to the age brackets of kids daycare centres cater to, it really depends on the centre and whether it’s also a centre that offers before and after school care. A typical daycare centre (where children spend the entire day there) is generally the same as with preschool, catering for children up to the age of 5. However, if the centre offers before and after school care as well, then the age group may be expanded up to 12 or 13 years of age.
If you’re looking to enrol a school-aged child with daycare, be sure it’s a facility that caters for the age of the child and provides before and after school supervision.
Are The Operating Hours the Same for Daycare and Preschool?
The answer to this question is not absolute as, once again, it really depends on the centre in question. Some centres follow the hours of schools. As an example, they might be open from 9 am to 3 pm, whether it’s a daycare centre or a preschool. Long daycare centres will generally open their doors around 7.30 am and not close them until 6 pm or even 7 pm.
When approaching a centre for either daycare or preschool, always ask what ages they accommodate and their operating hours, so there’s no confusion or disappointment.
Which Facility Offers The Most Education? Daycare Or Preschool?
While both types of child care facilities generally offer some degree of education, preschools and early education centres are usually more focused on a learning curriculum for children that encompasses many facets of education.
In addition to learning the academic basics in subjects like science, computers, maths and English, the preschool format, designed for children primarily 3-5 years of age and early education centres, catering to kids from babies up to 5 years of age, focus a lot of attention on other facets of learning and development. Some examples include:
- Learning all about proper nutrition and healthy eating
- Learning how to grow and harvest their own vegetables
- Developing social skills, communication skills and building self-confidence
- Activities to promote physical fitness and fine motor skills
- Learning how to be independent
- Teamwork activities
- Music therapy
- Language learning
- School readiness programs
- And more…
This is not to suggest that regular daycare centres don’t offer any of these activities, but preschool and early education centres make it a point of including at least some of the above list in their daily and weekly curriculum.
To be totally certain what the centre is offering you and your child, be sure to ask for a copy of their curriculum. Not all daycare centres or preschools are the same, so you’ll want to ascertain this information in the first instance.
Daycare and Preschool Cost
Costs will also vary from centre to centre but generally speaking, when you enrol your preschool-aged child in an early education centre, usually you are signing on for a full time situation, where your child attends the centre each weekday.
With daycare centres, many of these offer more flexibility when it comes to attendance. For example, you may only need to leave your child in daycare for a few hours a day, or only one or two days per week. In this instance, you’ll want a centre that offers more casual daycare hours and only charges you for the time your child or children are actually in daycare.
Endeavour Early Education Centres
For broad-spectrum daycare and the ultimate in interactive education and entertainment for young children, consider enrolling your child in an Endeavour Early Education centre. Give us a call and discover just how much we’ll be able to help your child, prior to them commencing school.