What is Pre-Kindergarten? How is it Different From Preschool?

Many schools offer pre-kindergarten and preschool programs for children aged 2-5. These programs are also known as kindergarten prep. However, people are often confused about the difference between preschool and pre-K. In this blog, we will provide the answer to a very common question i.e. What is Pre-kindergarten? And the comparison of Pre-kindergarten vs preschool.

What is Pre-Kindergarten?

Pre-kindergarten is the preparation of children for the formal school setting. This program actually trains them for the Kindergarten program and makes them able to read, learn, and understand the Kindergarten curriculum. 

Unlike preschool, pre-kindergarten is for older students (up to 5 years) who are not yet ready to attend the kindergarten program. This program focuses on advanced learning to prepare kids for kindergarten and even for elementary programs. This program is known to be more “exclusive” as it involves a structured environment and subjects like math, science, etc.

Difference Between Preschool and Pre-Kindergarten?

The main difference between pre-kindergarten and preschool is the “age group”. Preschool is for children aged between 2-4 years and the Pre-K program is for children between 3-5 years.

Secondly, students in preschool learn through playful activities like coloring, counting, etc. However, the pre-kindergarten program involves a proper introduction to math, science social studies, etc. 

Preschool Curriculum

The curriculum for preschool students includes:

  • Gross and fine motor skills.
  • Communication.
  • Pre-reading and pre-language skills.
  • Discovery and curiosity.
  • Imaginative play.
  • Problem-solving.

Pre-kindergarten Curriculum

The curriculum in the Pre-K program involves:

  • Social studies introduction.
  • Math introduction.
  • Language arts.
  • Phonics.
  • Science introduction.

Why Pre-Kindergarten is Important?

Children develop their language skills and vocabulary in preschool and become ready to learn new things in a playful environment. After enrolling in the pre-kindergarten, they learn to study in a structured environment.

The pre-kindergarten program enhances their confidence to work independently and improves their social and problem-solving skills. Pre-kindergarten is a bridge between preschooling and kindergarten that prepares students for structured learning i.e. reading, writing, doing math, conducting science experiments, etc.

Which Program is Best For Your Child?

For children of 2 years of age, the preschool program may be the best as it gives them a learning experience in a playful and unstructured environment. However, if you want to prepare your children for a school setting, you may choose a pre-kindergarten program as it will develop essential skills that are needed to read and understand the Kindergarten curriculum.

What Should Be Included in a Great Pre-Kindergarten Program?

  • It should include playful hands-on activities and experiments.
  • Scheduled and well-planned activities on a daily basis for meaningful learning.
  • Helpful feedback for students with encouragement.
  • Creative activities like coloring, painting, writing, etc.
  • Arts & crafts.
  • Physical education.
  • Nursery rhymes.
  • Phonics.

What’s Included in The Southeast Academy’s Pre-Kindergarten Homeschool Program?

  • Biblically-based lessons.
  • Hands-on learning activities.
  • Introduction to social studies, language arts, math, phonics, and science
  • Preparation of students for reading Kindergarten program.
  • Book-based program monitored by student advocate.
  • Work evaluation by the school.
  • 180 lessons.
  • Health & Safety.
  • Arts & Crafts.
  • Music.
  • Physical Education.
  • Resource packet.
  • Two student books and Two teacher’s guides.
  • Sing-along music CD, basic flashcards, and other manipulatives are included in the resource packet.