Difference between Preschool and Playschool

Key Difference: Preschool is an institution that is meant for a child between infancy and school education. Preschool is a generic term to denote any type of institution that forms a part of elementary learning systems. Playschool is an informal nursery group that is usually meant for the children between the ages of two and four. It is a type of preschool that focuses on play-based education. Most of the time, a playschool is also used as a synonym to preschool.

Preschool is an institution that is meant for a child between infancy and school education. Preschool is a generic term to denote any type of institution that forms a part of elementary learning systems. Montessori and playschool are also a form of preschool. These forms are based on the same underlying concept. They prepare the children for kindergarten. A preschool is often referred to as a nursery school. They aim to provide care and education for children below statutory school age. Most often the preschools are integrated with child care.

Playschool refers to an informal nursery group. It serves a role of an educational institution for children too young to start studying in an elementary school. A playschool is also known as a playgroup. They operate for only a few hours a day during regular school term. These institutions precede the beginning of elementary school. They have been designed for the children who are too young to attend kindergarten or a nursery school. It mainly focuses on developing the abilities and skills of the children in a playful manner. Playschool staff takes good care of the children. They help a child for an easier transition to kindergarten.

Comparison between Preschool and Playschool:

 

Preschool

Playschool

Definition

Denotes any type of institution that has been designed for children who are too young to go to school.

Playschool refers to an informal nursery group.

Types

Some of the types are - 

  • Montessori – Developed by educator Maria Montessori, they intend to develop a child’s senses.
  • Waldorf – Based on the teachings of Austrian writer Rudolf Steiner. Teachers need to be Waldorf certified.
  • Reggio Emilia – It encourages exploration and concentrates on the importance of community and self-expression.
  • Bank Street – Based in the educational philosophy of John Dewy. Focuses on hands-on activities, etc.

Some of the types include –

  • Groups for specific ages – Cater to the children of different ages and with stages of development.
  • Father’s group – A playgroup often run by local dads.
  • Nature based groups
  • Groups with children with a disability
  • Grandparents groups
  • Other popular playgroup types include:

Montessori / Waldorf / Steiner groups

Advantages

  • They serve as the foundation for academic learning.
  • It assists the child to grasp phonics and reading skills.
  • Interaction with other children.
  • Assists in developing social skills of a child.
  • Provides an opportunity to the children to meet and play with their peer.
  • Children learn to stay away with the parents.
  • It helps in building up confidence of a child.
  • To teach various skills by fun-based methods.

 

Image Courtesy: taylorchapel.org, lovethyneighbourhood3056.blogspot.com

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