These days, it seems as if you should consider options for your child’s education the moment you decide to have kids! Okay, maybe it’s not that serious, but there are a number of questions to ask when it comes to your child’s education and which school is right for your child at any age.
Ideally, kindergarten should act as a smooth transition into real school for your child. According to this Scholastic article, it “provides your child with an opportunity to learn and practice the essential social, emotional, problem-solving, and study skills that he will use throughout his schooling.”
We are blessed to have so many options for kindergarten around Rome. PALS (play and learn service) Kindergarten at Trinity United Methodist Church** is one program you should consider for your rising kindergartener. Here’s why:
1. Half-day class
“My son Thomas attended PALS Kindergarten before going to first grade at Glenwood. At PALS, they were able to focus on what Thomas needed for school without wasting time on walking to the cafeteria, etc.” -Missy Hargett, PALS parent
PALS kindergarten is half-day, so school time is spent on valuable teaching, interaction, and play rather than waiting in lines and for transitions. Your children are only young once. They have the next 12+ years to spend in school full-time. If you’re worried about long days and unnecessary activities, consider PALS.
Concerned your child will be behind? Research on half versus full-day programs show less probability of stress (1). There is also “little meaningful difference in the level of children’s end-of-year reading and mathematics knowledge and skills” (2).
Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays
9 am – 1 pm
Mondays, Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Fridays
9 am – 1 pm
2. “Red Shirt” Year for Summer Birthday
“PALS Kindergarten has been a huge blessing for our family. For our younger son, PALS Kindergarten was a great start, and a springboard into kindergarten in public school. He has an August birthday. PALS has given him an extra year to mature while still being challenged.” –Becky Owens, PALS parent
It is becoming increasingly more popular to hold children with summer birthdays back a year (called “red shirting”). If you’re unsure whether to start your child with a late birthday in kindergarten, consider one year at PALS before a full-day kindergarten program. PALS can act as a transition year for children to mature, gain a solid educational foundation in small classes, and provide readiness for a public, private, or homeschool kindergarten.
3. Teacher/Student Involvement
I am a huge fan of the small class size, where Thomas’ specific needs could be met, and he could get the attention he needed. -Missy Hargett, PALS Parent
Classes are limited to 16 students with one teacher and a teacher’s aide. At PALS, the teachers are committed to building relationships with the children to help them reach their potential.
Dawn Therber is the PALS Kindergarten teacher. In addition to her 14 years of elementary school teaching, she holds a BS degree in Multidisciplinary School Learning K-8 and a Master of Education in Educational Leadership from Trevecca Nazarene University.
The teacher aide is Kristina Maddox who stays the entire school day, cutting the student/teacher ratio in half.
4. Academic Curriculum
“My older son…left PALS ready for first grade and did well transitioning into public school.” -Becky Owens, PALS Parent
The PALS Kindergarten goal is to prepare children for success in first grade. They use all Georgia state standards and test assessments (DIBELS) to prepare children using a creative and fun-filled curriculum. In addition, they exceed national educational standards and practice daily writing and hands-on math and science. More on academics on the PALS website.
The moment I stepped into PALS for a preschool tour, I was treated as family. Parents are not only invited, but encouraged to be a part of the classroom. The kids and teacher were behaved and happy. -Tanaya Larsen, new PALS parent
It’s a good idea to visit any school you are considering for your child and ask questions to see if that school is a good fit for your family.
PALS is holding a Kindergarten open house on February 21st from 6:30-7:30pm where you may ask questions and see if PALS Kindergarten is a good fit for you. In addition to the open house, you are always welcome to schedule a visit online during the school day to see the environment with the kids in action.
PALS (Play and Learn Service)
Trinity United Methodist Church
606 Turner McCall Blvd, Rome, GA 30165
Kindergarten Open House Info
Tuesday, March 12
PALS Kindergarten is the most affordable private Kindergarten program in Rome. If your budget is tight, but you still want the flexibility and quality of private school, PALS is a great option.
$210/August (3 days/week)
$245/month through the rest of the year
Registration and curriculum fee: $100
*Bonus: PALS also offers a Homeschool Program to complement your child’s learning at home!*
(1) Finkelstein, Judith M. Results of Midwestern University Professors Study: Kindergarten Scheduling. 1983
(2) Early Childhood Longitudinal Study, conducted by the National Center for Education Statistics in 2004. The most comprehensive study of full-day versus half-day kindergarten.
**Disclaimer: Though this is a sponsored post, I only spotlight programs and events that I believe in.**