So you’ve decided that you want to enroll your son or daughter in a child care program. Great! You decide to search online for day care centers in your area and you notice that your search engine returns a wide range of child care services from a ‘one person home operation’ to a full fledged preschool.
The search engine will show terms like preschool, day care, and early learning center….all local companies vying for your business. But how do you choose between preschools, day cares, and early learning centers?
While preschools and early learning centers may mean the same thing, a day care certainly does not. A day care is defined as: daytime care for the needs of people who cannot be fully independent, such as children or the elderly.
In contrast an early learning center or preschool is generally recognized as an educational institution where your child goes to learn before entering kindergarten or first grade. Education is the key difference between a day care and a preschool.
So why do we bother taking the time to show the distinction between the two? After all, they’re both places where you send your kids while you work, study, etc. right?
The simple answer is no. As you can see from the photos below, we have 3 preschools in Fort Myers that offer so much more than just a place for your child to go for the day.
Click any photo to view it as a slideshow.
Whereas a person who operates a child care center from her home may only accept two year old’s and under, each of our early learning centers in Fort Myers (Edison, Geraci, and Messina) accept children up to 8 years of age so your child will begin making friends early on that can last into elementary school and further.
Typically you won’t find:
- Designated areas for art
- Elaborate indoor and outdoor playgrounds
- Hundreds of toys specifically designed for learning
- Trained teachers who are devoted to helping young children learn about the world around them
In summary, if you’re only searching for a care-taker of your child, then a day care should suffice. But if you’d like your child to learn while being looked after, then a preschool or early learning center is the best choice.
At Child Care of Southwest Florida, we have not only run six, top-notch early learning centers in Lee and Hendry counties for over 40 years, but we’re also the best at what we do!
We invite you to come see for yourself. Please contact any of our early learning center directors to tour the preschool of your choice or call our corporate office at (239) 278-1002. We look forward to meeting you and your child!