April, National Volunteer Month, is a great time to get involved with your child’s preschool.
In the United States, at least, the weather is starting to warm up, and more of us are making our way outdoors. As the sunshine of spring fills our souls and energizes us, it makes sense that April is National Volunteer Month.
If the winter holidays are a season to give financially, springtime should be considered the season to give of our time.
For those of you who are preschool parents, we encourage you to see how you can volunteer at your child’s preschool. Besides the benefit of giving back to others, studies have shown that children whose parents are involved in their school have better outcomes. The biggest positive effects were seen at the elementary level (versus the secondary level), so that tells us that parental involvement in school early in life might be more beneficial to our children. Why not start at the preschool level?
Our child’s language immersion preschool has a nonprofit status, and one of the requirement of enrolled families is a 10-hour volunteer contribution per semester, per family. If a family is unable to volunteer, then they can provide a minimum donation to the school.
There are other nonprofit language immersion preschools across the country, but even if yours is not a nonprofit or doesn’t have a volunteer requirement, you can still get involved!
The best way to find out how to volunteer is to ask your preschool’s director or teacher directly. Be transparent about the amount of time you will be able to contribute, as well as the frequency or regularity of your service (in other words, would you like a one-time-only opportunity or something that is ongoing in nature?).
You can also present your own volunteer ideas to the school staff. Maybe you have something in mind already, but if not, here are 8 options to inspire you for National Volunteer Month:
- Read aloud to children—this is especially valuable for language immersion preschool programs if you speak the school’s target language!
- Manage the website, blog, or social media accounts (Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, etc.)
- Represent the preschool at local school fairs or other community events
- Organize classroom holiday parties
- Do something special for the staff for Teacher Appreciation Week in May
- Participate in or lead school fundraisers
- Sanitize classrooms before or after school or on the weekends
- Put together bookshelves, hang photos, maintain the outdoor garden, or do whatever else is necessary to keep the school in top-top shape
Your personality, talents, and interests will help guide your eventual volunteer responsibilities, but be open, too, to taking on new tasks that might stretch you out of your comfort zone. Volunteerism provides a fantastic opportunity for you to not only do good for your community, but also to develop your own skills.