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What should I be teaching my 3 year old?

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 

I'm a full time stay at home mom and we will not be doing public preschool. We are considering homeschooling in general and I guess now is a good time to start :) What should I be teaching my 3 year old? Any recommendations on books, DVDs, etc. ?

post #2 of 5

You should post this in the learning at home section, you might get more responses. I don't think you need to "teach" anything at this age. I would read books, get out in nature a lot, play games, cook with them, do crafts together, let them have all the imaginative play they want. That's all they need at this age. We love Little Acorn Learning for Pre-K and K curricula:



post #3 of 5


Rather than teach (as in select lessons about letters or numbers or shapes etc. and instruct them), I would encourage him/her to explore and observe, ask questions about what they notice and then seek answers together about whatever they are interested in. If that happens to be letters and reading or counting or learning about shapes etc. than that's wonderful. But if it's about learning how a spider weaves a web and uses it to catch insects for food, then that's wonderful too. As you explore, s/he'll probably learn a lot about reading and math without needing separate lessons. 


When he was about 2 y.o., my DS had a fascination for trains (thank you, Thomas the Tank Engine). We checked out every library book about trains available - moving on to adult books with photos and drawings when he had exhausted all the books in the children's section. He learned about steam vs. diesel vs. electric, could identify different freight cars, and understood about different gauges for wheels and tracks. Along the way, he was learning about reading and numbers and classification systems and the Dewey decimal system and spatial relations for building tracks and all sorts of other stuff. 


Enjoy! That's such a wonderful age. 

post #4 of 5

I think 3 is still a "learn by doing/playing" age.  My little boy is turning 4 this month, and as far "how" he has learned in the past year, it mainly by playing, talking, going, reading, and by example. He has really picked up a lot just by living life, and by having people actively interested in what his thoughts and interests are. Of course, there were TONS of lessons along the way (math, science, morals, vocabulary, etc etc) but little of it was planned out.

post #5 of 5
Thread Starter 

Thanks for the replies! I will check out the learning at home forum and will definitely check out that curriculum for future reference. These are definitely all things we do already, my girly is great at question asking! She loves to help me cook and clean and she LOVES to be outdoors. I guess now that we're out of the toddler stage I just want to make sure I'm teaching her what I should be, we're headed into a new stage and it's new territory for me :) I think you're both right though, at this age they do learn so much from just experiencing things with you and asking questions. We'll keep on doin' what we're doin'! :)

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