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Homeschooling Preschoolers Jan '06 - Page 3

post #41 of 145
Today rained all day and the toddler was cranky as all get out. The four year old spent the whole day eating pretzels and watching BBC's "walking with the dinosaurs" DVD twice.

I just have no energy today. I need to make extra sure I don't skip my yoga tonight.

edited to add the DVD is 3 hours long..
post #42 of 145
Originally Posted by eilonwy
I got a really cool catalog in the mail, with excellent prices... the only trouble is, much of the good stuff comes in sets designed for 12 or more kids. At the very most, I'd need 4-6 of anything. Some of the projects look like so much fun, though! I may start a co-op or something over in Co-ops and Swaps for some of these.

Are you talking about Oriental Trading? i get it all the time but still haven't ordered from it yet for the reason you mentioned. It's so intriguing though, with all those great prices for bulk items
post #43 of 145
Originally Posted by ella-makes-3
I am feeling really guilty about not being structured and just letting dd 1 just kind of play. She is really intelligent, and may benefit from some structure in her day, as far as after breakfast we concentrate on letter / numbers etc.
I am very for the play, and just letting children be children and do what they are supposed to do ( which is just play ! IMO) but I guess I have to feel guilty about something eh?
Structure doesn't have to be an all-or-nothing deal; I'm just learning that. You can have a routine but no schedule (do things in the same order but at different times), or partial-day schedules (right now, we only have a schedule for bedtime; everything else is pretty random). There are loads of options. You should also no that having a schedule doesn't necessarily mean that you have to do formal academics... you can schedule messy play, outdoor play, etc. Your daughter can help you come up with the schedule for the day-- ask her what she wants to do, then the two of you decide on an order... It can be fun.

That's what BeanBean and I are doing. He asks to do certain things during the day, and we make sure to get them in. We're becoming more structured every day, and it's his choice. Speaking of which, I need to finish this up and get going, I promised someone that we'd do some "homework" today, and we've got to find a sharp pencil for that to happen.

The catalog is actually the S & S catalog. It's so freaking cool!! I could totally go crazy with it.

Hm. He's found his "homework" and a pencil, and decided to go on without me... Funny kid.

Have I mentioned that the chapters in The Secret Garden are very short? For the past two nights, BooBah has requested more reading. Last night, we read a chapter of TSG, a page of Black Beauty ("Look at that pretty horse! I want to read this book!") and Puppies in the Snow before she was finally willing to turn the lights out. She just can't get enough of bedtime reading. Hooray!

Oops, the pencil was a colored pencil, and now he's irritated. Time to go!
post #44 of 145
Charlie in the Chocolate Factory does too and we found one at the library illustrated by Quentin Blake that was really nice. This one.

Originally Posted by eilonwy
Have I mentioned that the chapters in The Secret Garden are very short?
This reminds me that I have TSG somewhere upstairs and I need to go dig it out.
post #45 of 145
Hello, everyone. I was glad to see this thread.

I'm Heather. I have a four-year-old son and a fifteen-month-old daughter. They are really active kids, so most of our learning is on the go!

Lately we've been doing a lot of "cooking." I bring out the flour, cornstarch, food coloring, water, measuring spoons, and measuring cups, and my son makes up "recipes." He loves it. He insists upon writing them down, and really seems to remember past ones. He'll furrow his eyebrows, thumb through his notebook and say, "Now where did I put that recipe for Slimy Green Goop?" It's wasteful and makes a big mess, but he loves it.

My dd likes to play in the sink while this is going on. She could play in the water all day long.
post #46 of 145
Hi. I am new here. I have a 4 1/2 year old and an 8 month old. My DS was in preschool until a few months ago. He is now home with me fulltime so we are both adjusting to it. He adjusted better than I thought he would. I was afraid he would miss his friends a lot. At times I do feel bad because he is used to going outside two times a day and running around with lots of kids for hours. I have a hard time getting out for long periods with him in the winter with the baby and when we do I can't do everything he wants but we are adjusting. We at least get out and go for walks each day. He loves to write letters and will ask me all day how to spell things. He will write letters for people and fold them and put them in envelopes for me to mail. He has also moved on to showing interest in short chapter books. He loves the Magic Tree House series and Toad and Frog. I try to have a few days at home and a few days where we go on outings to the library, science center or some other trip. I am still trying to get the hang of having him at home full time. It has been wonderful so far though.
post #47 of 145
Oh I haven't been to MDC in such a long time! I didn't realize there was a regular thread for home pre-school! I'm beginning more full force on things so here's our info too

DD (age 4) is just doing things on her own basically. I'm taking a very eclectic approach to homeschooling. She loves to write her name and do letters on the fridge. I feel bad tonight b/c I told her to go put these "special" letters away. Why do we do this sometimes? Anyway, I got 2 more Kumon books for her to start after her birthday. My goal is to be purged of junk so we can have a more organized area for her and brother. I'm also going to being teaching her a few more things about our Faith. We're Catholic and I've really lacked in doing that w/ her. I picked up the pace this holiday and want to continue as well.

Have you ever seen the Kumon books? They are really nicely done I think. They can do what they want when they want and at their own pace and abilities. I got her the cutting book and she got so good at scissors w/ it. She LOVED doing it until about page 30. But by that point she had no problem w/ them. I got the pasting one for her and Upper Case letters. We just found as well a 2 year old series of stickers and pasting. So exicitied about that b/c then I can do that w/ my 2 yr old son.

Oh yes, brings me to him now He just turned 2 and well, just not at the same verbal skill as DD was at this point. He has improved greatly though. He understands "2" and thinks he knows what "5" means. He loves "cooking" and real cooking.

My plan is to intergrate cooking into our lessons as much as possible. Right now, I've gotten a calendar and I' mwriting doing when I make our staples like yogurt and bread and rice so that I can make out the next month w/ those foods items down. DD is having a great time planing on the calendar too. I made some stickers for things we do like parks, birthdays, holidays, hikes, special days, dance, music, and library. It has really helped her learn the days of the week and helps her to know what to expect for the week as well. I'm gonna like having the food down too for myself. I tried last month making a cleaning chart for myself but it only depressed me when I didn't get to it, so alas, cleaning is just a if we do it sorta thing.

Okay, hope to learn a ton from you all!
oh, have you been here:

really nice group list for getting some preschooling ideas
post #48 of 145
Today was a disaster, as I was stressing in a big way about financial issues (dh or I will probably have to find a different job in a month or so). Meanwhile, dd seems to have come back to writing with some new insight. She drew a cocoon and wrote, "kecoon" and "kcoon" the mirror way (right to left with all letters facing backward), then her final version, "kcoon" from left to write. Later she drew her fish and wrote below, "the fish Klora" (pronounced kuh-LAH-ra), again the mirror way. She asked for help along the way, and I told her how to spell the and sh. Although the real Klora is a humble feeder goldfish, Klora's artistic representation has extravagant multicolored stripes.

I've been thinking about dd's lack of interest in Spanish. It puzzles me, since she hears people (including kids she plays with and their parents) use it all the time, she picks bilingual books at the library, and we discuss it sometimes. When she was littler, she had a positive aversion, and would freak out and hide when someone talked to her in Spanish. She also freaked out about pre-verbal but mobile babies, so I guess maybe it was her inability to understand and communicate verbally that disturbed her. Now she understands that Spanish is another language, can recognize it, and pretends to speak Spanish by making up streams of nonsense syllables. But she totally ignores the specific words she encounters, even in relatively easy-to-internalize contexts like books and games. Is this unusual???
post #49 of 145
Forgot to say, welcome to all the new people!
post #50 of 145
We're having a pretty lazy day around here. I don't mind. I need the break.

I think I'll go make myself some cocoa.
post #51 of 145
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by eilonwy
We're having a pretty lazy day around here. I don't mind. I need the break.

I think I'll go make myself some cocoa.
We are too ... ds#1 isn't feeling too well, so we've watched an amazing amount of PBSKids and just cuddled all together. I think days like this are needed every once in a while.
post #52 of 145
I just made DS"s night by printing off tons of Chicka Chicka Boom boom activities. http://www.dltk-kids.com/books/chick...kacoloring.htm is one of them. He took them all and lined them up while singing the story. Cute.

We haven't done a great deal lately. I'm not too stressed about it. When they want to do something, we do it. Of course it usually ends up being me doing it (like "our" cookie making ended up being me making cookies while they danced around, lol!). Everyday their minds are expanding so much it just amazes me. It's great seeing them go from little helpless babes to "smart cookies" (as DS likes to call himself).
post #53 of 145
BeanBean has become a real person lately.. he just does things and says things and I look at him and think, "What happened to my little boy?" : He seems so grown up lately. : I kind of want him to be a baby for a little bit longer, but I won't hold him back.

And in that vein: I've decided to let BooBah go. I've finally come to realize that I can't hold her back for much longer, and I think that overall I'm not doing her any favors by waiting any longer. All I'm really doing is frustrating her, and that's totally unfair, so I give up: I will do what BooBah asks. As soon as I have some spare cash, I'm going to buy her EarlyBird 1A, and I'm going to start working through TOPGTTR with her. Perhaps she'll lose interest fairly quickly, and I'll be able to relax and start treating her like a baby again. I'm trying not to hold any expectations either way; if she loses interest, we can always put the books away for a while and if she wants to keep going... well, we'll keep going. We'll cross that bridge when we come to it. I'm having a hard time believing that I'm going to do this with a child who is not only not potty learned, but unlikely to potty learn any time soon (because she's got a kidney problem which causes her to put out excessive amounts of urine, she's very likely to take longer than average to be able to control her bladder; she already poops in the potty very regularly, ). Apparently, though, I'm the only person who has a hard time believing it. Mike thinks it's a teensy bit scary, but he's with me: BooBah is, quite vocally, demanding more. My mother says, "You wanted to do these things at her age, too..." and reminds me, once again, of the whole reason that I believe in following a child's lead in this sort of thing, regardless of their age.

So I guess I've got two preschool aged homeschoolers now. I haven't quite wrapped my head around it, but I'm coming to accept it... I think all will be well.

Time to brush, swish, and spit!
post #54 of 145
Originally Posted by eilonwy
he just does things and says things and I look at him and think, "What happened to my little boy?" : He seems so grown up lately. :
I know the feeling!!! I suspect we all do.

And hooray for following BoohBah's lead.
post #55 of 145
Originally Posted by acystay
I'm also going to being teaching her a few more things about our Faith. We're Catholic and I've really lacked in doing that w/ her. I picked up the pace this holiday and want to continue as well.
I'd love to hear what you end up doing.

My dd has been really taken with the Jesus infancy narrative for about 2 months now. I'd been thinking about suggesting that we make a good shepherd set, the kind that is used in Montessori catechesis. In theory, making and using a 3D thing like this is something Grace would love, especially if she hears it's a religious object for kids. (After years of CC upbringing in which she's been included in our adult lives, Grace LOVES "kids only" stuff. ) But after months of admiring Catechesis of the Good Shepherd, I'm wondering...would Grace "get" and relate to the good shepherd idea? Or would I be inserting something that would interfere with her natural way of relating to the external narrative of Jesus' life and to Mary? (I can imagine her taking the shepherd thing literally and asking why Jesus had sheep...)

I'll probably end up not rocking the boat.
post #56 of 145
First of all, I want to welcome the people who just found us

Second, on the topic of sewing again, Raye and I did some weaving today and I think that those of you who were wondering about these types of projects would find it another great way to start out for young hands (we use paper products for our projects before moving on to felt and subsequently other fabrics). For instance, with the weaving project we just used multiple strips of contruction paper and wove it into a large square. Raye picked up on the over-under concept well and decided the square would make perfect curtains for her dollhouse
Likewise, we did the same with the sewing projects. We started "sewing" (as I said earlier I think?) with cardstock and hole punches (cardstock was the only thing I could find at the time that could be punched) and yarn. Now she is older and capable of handling needles and we are doing simple felt projects.
I can't wait to get her a loom!

Originally Posted by eilonwy
BeanBean has become a real person lately.. he just does things and says things and I look at him and think, "What happened to my little boy?" : He seems so grown up lately. : I kind of want him to be a baby for a little bit longer, but I won't hold him back.
I've been saying this to myself SO often lately. It's driving me crazy to the point of sounding like my mother : Hi mom!
post #57 of 145
Oh one more thing: I read Where Willy Went to Raye today (it's a book about you know what and making a baby ) and she loved it and had me read it two more times Have you heard of it or is anyone to the point of this type of literature with their kids yet? Raye loved the book and is totally satisfied with all the info she's discovered on the topic thus far
post #58 of 145
BeanBean was totally into human reproduction for a while (very understandable, considering that he's expecting a sister in a few months ) but he still hasn't made the connection between "sperm and egg" and how they get where they're going, iykwim. He knows all kinds of things that I remember kids in my health classes being confused about, though; like, at the bottom of mommy's uterus is a cervix, which will open up when the baby is ready so the baby can come out. This week, I finally explained to him the concept of the urethra (he wanted to know if my peepees came out of my anus ) and when Mike got home he said, "Daddy, I have a eureeka!" : This was all the more adorable because BeanBean doesn't often mispronounce words.

As to cardstock-- I did buy BeanBean some lacing shapes at WalMart a loooong time ago (I'm thinking, before BooBah was born?) and he's quite facile with them. I hadn't thought of weaving, but I bet he'd get a real kick out of paper weaving... Anyway, I was thinking that the felt might be a nice step "up" from the cardboard shapes...
post #59 of 145
Hi. My name is Tori. I've been reading (lurking?) so much in the different forums lately AND off and on over many months. I really love this site, overall, and this thread particularly. I'm excited to see there are other mommas here who actually REALLY work with their babies! So many women I know just seem to let their child or children do whatever paying little attention to whether their babes gain knowledge or skills. And not that they would need to have classes of any sort, but they just seem to not even care whether the child is learning and growing.

Anyway, my daughter is almost 2 now, which I'm not quite able to believe most of the time. She is not speaking much, but it's basically because of her extensive (more than 140 words now) sign vocabulary. I stopped actively teaching her new words about 3 months ago because I wanted her to focus on speaking, but she still prefers sign. So, that's the main thing we've done together for "school" since she was 9 months old.

Once she turned 15 months, I think, we started working on colors, shapes, and letters. She doesn't get colors really at all, but she's terrific with all the shapes I put in front of her and she can read all but 9 of her letters. We're going to work on sigh words (she's already reading am and ham in GREEN EGGS AND HAM). Every time I ask her if she would like to have class, she gets very excited and follows directions even better and more quickly than during her very obedient moments. She really loves to learn and even really enjoys the more formal "class" thing. So, we're going to do that basically every day for 10-30 minutes (or as her interest and focus dictate).

We read at least 15 minutes before nap and bed time, but usually for more like 30 minutes. She LOVES Dr. Seuss! But she also really enjoys basically all the other books we have for her. Although we are quite short on money, we do have a tremendous stash of books!

Well, I guess that's all for now. I really look forward to reading more posts by the ladies here. Thank you for welcoming newbies to the thread and posting!
post #60 of 145
Hello Everyone. It's taken me a while to read through all of the posts (I get very choppy computer time) . I am very excited to find this post as I am just starting to HS my dd and in turn also my ds. I'll introduce myself a bit I have a dd Emelia, 3yrs 3mo, and a ds Eli, 17mo. Emelia has been blowing me away all of a sudden. It seems that at 3 she turned completely from toddler to a child, she is so grown up. We've really taken a laid back apporach to learning. A lot of free play, reading (Many books a day, the kids insist ) And whatever might come up, lots of trips to the park, library, coloring, painting. She started really acting out all of the time. My dh and I couldn't figure it out because she has always been such a well mannered child, unbelievably good . After her first and only tantrum We really slowed life down at that point, focused on being home and lots of loving. I picked up some craft books, workbooks, and homeschooling books and started researching. I realized that she is totally bored with life. She LOVES learning. I definately see that by my unstructured method of parenting I was not benefitting my children. So, I've been adding structure and intentional learning to our days. Eli is a little ball of energy wanting to be part of everything, so I try to include him in the learning on a younger level.

Interests/obsessions: dd is completely obsessed with ballet, reading and helping mom and dad . She is developing a love for painting as well. ds is obsessed with climbing, running, reading and his big sister

Avg week: mondays are dance class days. Emelia has morning ballet and creative movement, which she looks forward to all week, she's been really into dancing since before she could walk, it was a natural match. Eli and I walk around town while she's in class, and then the three of us walk to the library, fill my bag to the brim with books for the week and walk through the park if the day allows. The rest of the day is down time because the morning takes a lot out of us. Maybe a couple of workbook pages later in the evening if emelia wants to. tuesdays we try not to leave the house at all. (except to go outside) I'll do a theme for the day, so far we've done sheep, winter, and seeds. I'll do a couple of crafts, read several books, and whatever else I can find on the topic. THis seems to go over well for the most part. The rest of the week is primarily child-led. I clean up in the morning while the kids play and then I take cues from the kids and go with it. Emelia loves to help me do anything, (she started organizing my tupperware cupboard the other day al by herself) so I have her help me cook and clean. We belong to the nature center and the aquarium, and live close to the beach, so those are great get out of the house trips. I am interested in learning more about both montessori and waldorf styles so I'm researching that a bit, but I really want the learning to be a mixture of many things. I've actually been contemplating preschool 2 days a week next year because I found a great program at the nature center and Emelia seems to REALLY want to be part of it. It is just going to be soooo taxing on the budget . Most likely what I will end up doing with my children is a mixture of the two schoolings (me and the school system) I haven't decided totally and to be honest hs is very intimidating. I am so glad to have found a support system! Thanks I look forward to being part of this thread.
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