What kind of curriculum do you use for preschool?
There is a big push in our country to start schooling our children at younger and younger ages because it will make them "smarter." Not just in public school, but also in private schools and homeschools too. Parents are spending hundreds of dollars to send their children to preschool by the time they are three. Homeschoolers are spending hundreds of dollars on curriculum for their 3 and 4 year olds. Does anyone remember when preschool was for playing?
I have shocked people before with my answer, but I do not use curriculum with my preschoolers and its not because I don't want to spend the money either. I think that preschool (and kindergarten) is a time where children should be learning through play, through reading, and real life experiences. I spend a lot of time reading at my house. I read history and science aloud, I read from the Bible, and I read chapter books and the little ones are playing close by. Every afternoon I read picture books to the younger children and we will do activities related to the books. Before Five in a Row and Five in a Row is a great resource for picture books and activities related to them. A great website for lapbooks and activities related to FIAR is www.homeschoolshare.com. We sing songs when we clean up or to the baby. We count and do colors by using blocks, buttons, toys, or my favorite M and M's. We have plenty of art supplies available and ready for drawing, cutting, gluing, and painting. One of my favorite craft sites for younger children is www.dltk-kids.com Any project that the older children are doing that the little ones want to participate in , they can. We spend lots of time in the kitchen together. We have toys to inspire imaginative play: kitchen, blocks, dollhouse, knights and castle, cars, costumes, etc...They are learning through play all day long.
Now sometimes preschoolers want a math book or workbook because their older siblings have one. I usually get an inexpensive preschool workbook to pull out during school time. If we are making a craft or working on a map I always print enough for the little ones too so they can do it if they want to. For those times when an educational DVD would come in handy, I pull out one of our Leap Frog DVD's. The children love those.
You can successfully and inexpensively teach your preschooler at home. And have lots of fun doing it!