Why Your Child’s Preschool Teacher Isn’t Using Worksheets

You might discover that your child's preschool teacher does not use worksheets. This might be surprising, since you may have remembered performing worksheets as a part of your early education. However, teachers have found that worksheets are not as effective as previously thought and that it may be more-effective to have preschool be entirely focused on play.

Worksheets Are Convergent Materials

Worksheets are what are considered "convergent materials." There is only one right or wrong way to perform a worksheet. Conversely, children may better learn from activities in which there is more than one right answer. If there is more than one solution to a problem, your child will learn how to be more strategic and how to think outside the box.

Worksheets Are Discouraging

One of the consequences of worksheets is that children learn that there are consequences to taking risks. Then, when your child fails when taking a risk, he or she is more likely to feel incompetent and will be less motivated to experiment or think outside the box. This is especially problematic when some children perform better than others on worksheets, causing the lower-performing children to feel inferior.

Preschool Children Aren't Ready For Worksheets

Worksheets are a form of academic learning, as opposed to play-based learning. Academic learning has its role, but at the preschool level, it is meant primarily to prepare children for kindergarten. Play-based learning is more useful because children experience objects using their senses and are then able to use these objects to think abstractly. By understanding objects as symbols, children them develop the ability to understand symbols in print.

Worksheets Aren't An Indication Of A Child's Reading Ability

Some parents see the ability to follow a worksheet as an indication of a child's ability to read. However, the successful completion of a worksheet does not necessarily indicate a child's ability to read because some children are able to complete worksheets through trial and error.

Children Are Better Off With Play-Based Activities

Play-based activities are good for children physically as well as cognitively. Requiring that a child sit and perform a worksheet does not allow the child to experience that in which he or she needs at his or her developmental level. Children who appear to be hyperactive when performing worksheets are simply not meant to sit still for a long period. So, to better reinforce the lessons being taught in preschool, spend time discussing with the preschool teacher ways in which you can use play-based activities to help your child learn.