A preschool open house can serve a number of functions: It can help new families and their children become acclimatized to your preschool and how it works, it can provide parents with further information on what to expect from your curriculum and teachers, and it can be used as a marketing or recruitment tool to attract new families. It is very important that you plan your preschool open house ideas well in advance to take advantage of the unique opportunity.
The time and date your select for your preschool open house are very important. You want to ensure parents are available to attend, so Friday and Saturdays are not ideal. If you choose to host your open house on a weeknight, don’t make the start time too late in the evening. The best time of year to hold an open house (especially if you are looking to attract new families!) is about two months before your preschool application deadline.
One of the preschool open house ideas to help your event be successful is to consider the cleanliness of your space. All areas should be bright, clean and inviting. Keep clutter to a minimum and ensure the space is well-lit. This tidiness applies to you and your staff as well. Caregivers should dress neatly and be prepared to respond to questions from parents. When your preschool looks great, parents will get the impression that their child will be cared for in a safe, healthy and happy environment.
Parents who arrive at your open house should be welcomed by a happy, smiling child care provider who can answer their questions and help direct them. It’s important that people wandering in do not feel unwelcome or confused, or they may walk right back out! Projecting a welcoming feeling is essential to letting families know your preschool is a secure, friendly and caring environment for their children.
By no means do your refreshments need to be complicated – simply offer a few snacks and drinks for parents as well as their children. Think healthy snacks like fruit, vegetables, juices and water. Parents searching for the right preschool are highly conscious of nutrition, so providing junk foods like candy or soda can leave them with a bad first impression.
In a highly visible area, such as near the entrance to your preschool, you should set up a display table that contains essential information. Your set-up should include items like parent handbooks, sample daily reports, developmental checklists, typical preschool activities and an overview of your curriculum that parents can take with them. You’ll also want to proudly display any certifications or awards that your preschool has achieved, along with teacher profiles and photos.
When coming up with preschool open house ideas, consider what you would want to see as a prospective parent searching for the right child care center for their toddler. Take your time in thoroughly planning the event and offering the right information and activities to get families excited about your preschool. Most importantly, have fun! If you’re having a great time, and children are having a great time, this leaves a lasting impression on parents.
Do you have any other tips about hosting a successful open house for your preschool? Join the conversation at @HiMamaSocial and make sure to sign up for updates from our HiMama Blog for updates on similar content in the future!