Preschool vs. Family Care: What’s Right for Your Family?

How do you choose the best preschool option for your child? Kiddie Academy weighs in with this sponsored post.

Parenting is full of tough decisions, and finding the perfect childcare solution for your little one is high on the list of priorities. Should you choose a relative, hire a nanny, or find a high-quality early learning program? Each alternative has both pros and cons.  

In addition to selecting a clean, safe environment, you also want to choose a setting where your child enjoys each day, filled with loving care, discovery, and fun.  

Whether you’re just starting your search or narrowing down a few options, here’s a list of criteria when considering an early learning environment like Kiddie Academy. 

Kiddie Academy Educational Childcare Play Together
Kiddie Academy Educational Childcare reading
Kiddie Academy Educational Childcare Fun
a group of preschool children sitting on a carpet with their Kiddie Academy teacher

Focus on Education

Finding a caregiver who provides warmth as well as a strong educational foundation is one factor that can help to focus your decision. And, it’s an area where Kiddie Academy excels.  

The Kiddie Academy Life Essentials® curriculum includes innovative lessons and activities aligned with state standards to ensure your child builds emotional, cognitive, and gross motor skills. Through independent exploration, small and large group learning, and hands-on play, your child will develop a variety of skills and knowledge in areas like early literacy, math, science, art, and creative expression.

a preschool teacher reading a book to three children sitting near her on the carpet

Social and Emotional Readiness

Kindergarten readiness is a big deal – no parent wants their child to start their formal education several steps behind the rest of the class. However, being “ready” includes much more than mastery of early literacy and math concepts. The social component is equally important and hard to replicate in an at-home setting.

Consider this — many of the kids your child will meet in kindergarten will have already been in a structured preschool setting, giving them advantages when transitioning to school. A quality educational childcare center like Kiddie Academy prepares your child to listen and follow the teacher’s directions, collaborate with other kids, and work in small groups. We also teach skills such as waiting your turn, lining up, sharing, teamwork, and solving conflict. Our experienced teachers have a keen eye for helping your child channel their emotions into positive actions. 


While all childcare providers must meet Missouri licensing requirements to operate, very few take the extra step to become an accredited early childhood education program.

Your family’s care, safety, and happiness will always be our top concern. That’s why all three Kiddie Academy of St. Louis locations chose to seek and were awarded accreditation from the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC). This third-party accreditation ensures that our childcare centers provide a high-quality curriculum and practices, led by qualified teachers in a safe, caring environment. After all, you wouldn’t consider sending your child to an unaccredited kindergarten or elementary school that didn’t meet state standards. Why would you do so for educational childcare?

preschool students working at various stations in their Kiddie Academy. classroomAvoiding Uncomfortable Situations

Turning your friends or family members into your employees can be stressful, particularly when navigating emotional and financial issues. 

When you choose a professional service, the expectations are more defined, and you can largely avoid hurt feelings. While your daycare provider should have a caring, warm environment, in the end, you’re entering into a business relationship. Choosing an outside provider can prevent many potential issues.

Making the Right Choice for Your Family

Of course, there is no one-size-fits-all solution, and what works best for one family may not be the ideal choice for another. To make the best decision for your family, consider your child’s needs, work schedule, budget considerations, and comfort level with either option.  And, as with all things parenting-related, trust your instincts and prioritize your child’s happiness and well-being above all else.


a headshot of Emily Page, Director, Kiddie Academy of Chesterfield

Emily Page, Director of Kiddie Academy of Chesterfield

Emily began her career with Kiddie Academy in our O’Fallon location in January 2015 and became director of our Chesterfield location in January 2023. Emily has a BS degree in Biology and holds a Child Development Associate Certificate. Emily’s favorite quote about the work she does with young children is, “A person’s a person no matter how small” -Dr. Seuss


Kiddie Academy of Chesterfield
196 Hilltown Village Center • 636.778.4888
Kiddie Academy Chesterfield, MO
Kiddie Academy of Des Peres
13133 Manchester Road • 314.394.2800
Kiddie Academy in Des Peres, MO
Kiddie Academy of O’Fallon
4088 Winghaven Boulevard • 636.265.3444
Kiddie Academy, O’Fallon, MO


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