Making the Right choice for your child with The Goddard School
With so many new and young families moving into the ever -expanding Katy area, we have several mamas asking us about the preschools in the area for their little ones. We were invited by the The Goddard School on Ranch Point Dr in Cinco Ranch to visit their campus. From the moment we walked in, we were made to feel at home with the warmth and friendliness of the staff. Mrs. Ruby Munduchirakal, who has been the Director of the school for ten years (since they opened their doors in 2013), toured us through the school and to say that we were impressed is an understatement. We loved the clean campus, brightly colored walls, and especially enjoyed looking at the artwork in the classrooms which showcased the creativity and the lessons learned by the children.
The school provides several fun, hands-on play-based learning activities. Enrichment activities like Dance, Spanish, Music and Gymnastics are also provided at NO additional cost to provide a well-balanced approach to learning. The Goddard School strives to provide the best start to children to prepare them for Elementary school and beyond.
We sat down with Ms. Ruby and her team to help new families navigate the various options for preschools to make the right choice for their family.
Choosing a preschool for our children can be very daunting, especially for new parents. Can you tell us some of the important feature that parents should look for in a preschool?
In today’s environment, the safety of the children as well as promoting social and emotional development of the children is of utmost importance. The entrance to our school has a secure locked door which is continuously monitored by our Admin staff. Several security alarms in the school, playgrounds, and buses in addition to safety procedures such as Name to face checks are implemented to ensure the safety of our children.
Our classrooms are set up to provide a warm, nurturing, and inclusive environment with several age-appropriate toys, books and learning materials that helps children feel loved and safe. Our teachers are specially trained to nurture and promote social skills such as cooperation, empathy, sharing and taking turns.
When new mamas leave their children at school for the first time, they are worried if their children are well cared for. Can you elaborate more about the training that teachers require to provide quality childcare?
Preschool teachers are very passionate about providing the best for the children they care for. Our training modules help channel their passion and provide the appropriate guidance for our teachers to help students reach their full potential. Training includes lessons on indoor and outdoor safety, lesson planning, food handling, developmentally appropriate classroom structures, parent communication, sensory learning and more! We also provide updates to the parents several times a day until their children settle in, and the parents are comfortable.
Both working and stay-at-homes are never sure if they are sending their children to preschool too early or not soon enough. Is there an ideal age for children to start preschool?
The best age for children to start preschool really depends on each family’s needs. Most preschools offer admission for children from 2 months of age through the age of 5 years. Irrespective of the age when the child starts school, the preschool should be able to provide a smooth transition from home to classroom for the children. It is important to know how the school will help the child and the parents as they navigate this big change in their lives.
At the Goddard school, parents are provided continuous updates through photographs and videos regarding daily activities and lessons and a detailed daily report is provided with information on the meals, nap times, diaper changes and more through the Tadpole App. Parents are also welcome to call the school anytime for any updates.
How many teachers are in the school?
The Texas Minimum standards for Childcare Centers provides the teacher to student ratio which is strictly implemented in our school. We also provide additional teachers for any assistance required in the classrooms during special activities.
One of the big reasons for sending children to school is for their social interaction as well as to ensure they are starting to learn while having fun, especially for busy parents! Can you tell us how the little ones learn?
A well-balanced curriculum should address various aspects of a child’s development including cognitive, physical, social, emotional, creativity, communication, sensory and motor skills. It is also crucial to provide a stimulating learning environment with age-appropriate activities, materials and experiences that promote the love of learning.
The Goddard School’s new inquiry-based educational programs have teachers take an active role in observing and paying close attention to children’s behaviors, conversation, and questions. Their challenge is to follow-up on children’s interests, to support their inquiry by encouraging exploration and interaction in a setting which is rich with opportunities. The teacher also acts as the communicator, sharing with families what is happening at school and providing ideas on how to extend the learning at home. It is a two-way communication to engage with families connecting to support children.
What can parents expect for outdoor play time?
Outdoor and physical activity for preschoolers promote the development of gross motor skills, hands-on exploration, cooperation, and socialization as well as contribute to the emotional well-being by reducing stress and improving overall mental health. Scheduled outdoor and indoor playtime is essential for children to promote healthy habits.
Mealtimes and planning can be stressful for working parents and we want to make sure that little ones are eating healthily. Are meals provided in preschools these days?
Several schools provide snacks and lunch on campus. If meals are provided, ask for the monthly menu, and review the nutrition and options provided for children with allergies. Here, we have food catered for by a company that provides a well-balanced meal with options provided for vegetarian, gluten free, etc. Our teachers also encourage our children to make healthy choices while eating. We are a completely nut free school!
Transitioning from Preschool to Kindergarten is a big step for both our preschoolers and their families. Is there any special approach available for children to get them Kindergarten ready?
The teachers work with children to help them develop independence, confidence, learn responsibility and follow routines to create a strong foundation for kindergarten. The STEAM curriculum also helps them prepare for the academic aspect of school.
Our Pre kindergartener’s visit to an Elementary school for a field trip, helped the children not only feel prepared but also excited to start “BIG” school.
How does The Goddard School maintain their high level of quality and care?
Our teachers, who we take great pride in, provide unparalleled care for our children. The owners continuously motivate and set high standards for us as a team. We also host several events for both our enrolled families as well as the community which aims to provide fun, hands-on learning experiences for little ones. Delivering on what we promise while providing the most warm, comforting, and safe environment is what makes us special.
As the saying goes, “We cannot always build the future for youth, but we can build our youth for the Future”. Preparing our future generation by providing them with the best start possible is our passion and we guarantee to deliver on this promise!
We thank Ms. Ruby for her time in helping us and our readers. Please feel free to reach out to the Goddard School at 281-392-1200 (Ranch Point location) or 281-392-1200 (Westridge Creek Lane location) for more information and to schedule a tour!