Supplies for HSing a Preschooler? - Mothering Forums

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Old 07-24-2010, 07:07 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Hey there!

I have a few questions for you guys if you don't mind! My first however is what supplies did you use for your preschooler? I'm slowly gathering things together - ie, crayons, markers, construction paper, etc etc - but I feel like I'm missing a few things. Any ideas are welcome!

Second question - How did you save money? Even with all the school supply sales I've easily spent close to $100 and as I said before, I don't think I'm done.

And lastly, did you use a curriculum? I have a TON of workbooks and a few books about homeschooling preschoolers. But everytime someone asks what curr. I'm using and I tell them that, they act as if I'm "doing it wrong". Any suggestions for either now or for K. would be fabulous.

Thank you! <3

Jessica  married to the love of my life
Momma to: Levi (09/06), Junior (09/05) , Teagann (11/10) and two furbabies Nugget and Boo TTC our next bundle of love
 
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Old 07-24-2010, 08:46 PM
 
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I'm interested in the 'answers' to your questions as well - our dd is 3 too. We've just rearranged our house to make it more useful for homeschooling (and dealing with our clutter/projects!), and I am just thinking and researching for this coming year. Nice to hear of someone else homeschooling a 3 year old!

DD has a little table and chair, and a shelf nearby for her library books (and container of pencil crayons). I generally go to the library after work every week or two so that I can choose the books, but sometimes we go together and read for a while. My desk is beside her space with my computer and printer, and then we have a larger bookcase for her own books, a basket of paper (scrap, recycling, fliers) that she can use for cutting. DH keeps her kid scissors at his desk so she can ask for them, and so we are aware when she is using them.

I have a shelf available for binders and projects, and another for puzzles and 'educational toys' or something, but I'm still working on these areas.

Then, in the kitchen we have more space for DD and I to cook. She has her own apron and stool that she gets out. We have a lot of fun in the kitchen, so that will be a big part of 'preschool' for her.

DH plays guitar and piano, draws, and paints, and will be including DD in those activities with him.

So those are our initial thoughts for this year, but as for specifics, we are still working those out.
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Old 07-24-2010, 09:11 PM
 
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my boys tend to do a lot of crafts/projects so I love this time of yr where I can get crayola brand items for cheap. I do *hide* things to disburse throughout the yr unless I want all pkgs opened at once. My kids are a span of ages but I still find that we use (the most)


Crayons
Markers
All purpose Glue (liquid)
Glue sticks
scissors
chunky pencils (really thick ones)
LOTS of construction paper, manilla drawing paper, art paper of different kinds
(I also purchased a end roll of non printed newspaper roll from our local newspaper)
modeling clay (not playdough) something that will stay soft if left out
assort craft things like beads,feathers,pipe cleaners,wiggly eyes, pop sticks
(I love the dollar store for these items)
glitter glue
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Old 07-24-2010, 11:02 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Crrrunchberrie View Post
And lastly, did you use a curriculum? I have a TON of workbooks and a few books about homeschooling preschoolers. But everytime someone asks what curr. I'm using and I tell them that, they act as if I'm "doing it wrong". Any suggestions for either now or for K. would be fabulous.
I don't know who those people are, but my humble opinion is that they're WRONG!

Preschool is, after all, pre school - that means no curriculum. Playing, playing, playing, their only important work, is the order of the day, accompanied by simple, fun, little projects like others have already listed here. Lillian
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Old 07-24-2010, 11:14 PM
 
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I don't know who those people are, but my humble opinion is that they're WRONG!

Preschool is, after all, pre school - that means no curriculum. Playing, playing, playing, their only important work, is the order of the day, accompanied by simple, fun, little projects like others have already listed here. Lillian
Lillian the way I read that was that they reacted that way when she told them she had workbooks and books on hsing preschoolers. I.e. the same sentiment as yours (Not that I disagree with you, just that that is how I read the OP)

grateful Mama to DD May '06 and DS May '09
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Old 07-24-2010, 11:23 PM
 
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Quote:
I don't know who those people are, but my humble opinion is that they're WRONG!

Preschool is, after all, pre school - that means no curriculum. Playing, playing, playing, their only important work, is the order of the day, accompanied by simple, fun, little projects like others have already listed here. Lillian
This. Your kid does not need a curriculum at this age. (Our oldest is 10 and the only curriculum we've used so far is an online phonics program and some math workbooks which we are actually ditching this year. )

Let them play, teach them how to work along side of you, talk to them, let them use simple materials, work on the alphabet and numbers if they are interested, read lots of good books to them, etc...

As far as saving money, not buying expensive curriculum is probably the best way. Using the library is another good way. Also Target tends to lower their sales prices to clearance right when school starts and I've found that to be a good time to get consumables really cheap, but availability varies.
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Old 07-24-2010, 11:25 PM
 
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Lillian the way I read that was that they reacted that way when she told them she had workbooks and books on hsing preschoolers. I.e. the same sentiment as yours (Not that I disagree with you, just that that is how I read the OP)
OH!!! I think you're absolutely right - I went back and reread it, and that makes sense. I was outside painting today in the blazing mid day sun - kept thinking, "Mad dogs and Englishmen..." I live up against the woods - could easily have moved to the shade, could have put on a big hat, whatever... But I just couldn't stop - had to paint right then and there. Not a good idea. So I was probably a little tired and dehydrated. Lillian
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Old 07-24-2010, 11:36 PM
 
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i agree- no curriculum is needed. you can find tons of cute activities to do online. play with your child, let your child play alone, get out into the community (store, library, ect..), read to your child, let her have quiet times if she needs them. enjoy the rest of early childhood because it flies by! the library is the BEST resource out there- id take that over any curriculum package no matter what age my child was. nak, sorry this is scatter brained!

Leah- mama to Audrey born 12/29/03 and Gwyneth born 4/1/2009! Soon to be TTC #3!
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Old 07-25-2010, 12:08 AM
 
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We don't have a curriculum either

I do like to print activity inspiration from several Waldorf inspired websites, and we have a TON of activity books with craft projects/nature inspired stuff to do that I use on a weekly basis. I might go through them every Sunday and make a list of potential crafts or something like that.

We have a lot of open ended toys and a TON of books -- in fact, I never say no to a book so our shelves are bulging. We have a lot of reference guides/non fiction and basically have the opportunity to learn anything at our finger tips.

Crafts are also huge

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Old 07-25-2010, 12:47 AM
 
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My ds has gone to traditional preschool and even there, there is no big curriculum. They do lots of art, crafts, story, and PLAY! The only "academic" material they even touched on was letter of the day and learning about the calendar. That said, we are starting kindergarten at home this year and even then the only schooly stuff we'll be doing is progressing with reading at ds's pace and possibly some intro to math, just using everyday occurrences at home.

I would just try to make your home environment a learning environment. Not by introducing artificial schooly stuff, but by teaching your ds about the natural world around him. Teach him about what you're doing and why. If he has a particular interest, get some library books about those things to explore further.

My boys love to catch bugs or small pets and keep them in a jar for a few days to investigate! We learn about what to feed them and what type of environment they like and try to recreate it in some sort of container. We usually let them free after a couple days because the kids lose interest and they have fun setting them free!

Another great tip I've read about is that the first couple of years of homeschooling should be spent observing your child as he plays, so that you can find out his learning his style. You can buy all the workbooks you want, but you might have a kid who hates them!

Heather-- I'm a <>< SAHM of two fabulous boys 8/05 and 2/07
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Old 07-25-2010, 01:02 AM
 
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Crafty type things-
Things to color with, like crayons, colored pencils, markers, chalk, ect.
Scissors
Glue, lots and lots of glue, both liquid and sticks.
Different types of paper-lined, colored, card stock, plain news print, scrap booking paper, printer paper, ect
Different types of paint
Stickers, stamps, glitter, sequins, ect. Just some fun stuff
Pipe cleaners, pom pons, popsicle sticks
Little bits and pieces and odds and ends that could be used to create something new...I just keep a Tupperware box the size of a shoe box for this.

I have tried to make those cutesy little crafts that you find online or in the curriculum books, but I've found that my kids are simply not into them. Now I will just set out a few different crafty thing and they create whatever they want. Most of the time the end product doesn't resemble anything at all. It's the process of mixing paint colors, pouring glue, or cutting out free form shapes that they like.

Books. Lots and lots of books. Access to a library.

Open ended toys-
blocks, puzzles, balls, little animals and people, fabric scraps, containers, dress up clothes, ect.

Aside from that , access to a play ground or other place to get some energy out, and lots of exposure to interesting places. Even places that don't seem too interesting can be, like the post office. Usually the people there will be open to explaining how things work, what the machines are for, ect. One of our favorite field trips was to a PO. The kids got to sort mail, weigh packages on the scale, and put stamps on envelopes. We saw the inside of the mail truck and got to see how everything works. They even asked for a local address and showed us where our mail slot was! Same with the grocery store. They were great, they took us back into the huge freezers, let us see the trucks loading, touch a live lobster, and go back behind the bakery. I'm trying to coordinate one for the local animal shelter. My dd is interested in becoming a vet when she grows up, so I think seeing the vets office and being able to help the animals that need it would be a neat experience for her.

All that being said, I don't think there is anything wrong with workbooks. My dd got one as a gift when she was three and sat down and did it cover to cover in three days. And then asked for everyone she saw at the store. She still, at five, enjoys them, and we have quite a few. They are in a drawer with our homeschooling stuff, and she is free to get one out at any time. So long as it's not forced, workbooks can be fun and enjoyable for them. Not to mention it gave her something quiet to do while dd2 napped! I think that as long as it's not the main focus of your day, as long as your child is free to say no more, as long as they are free to create and explore outside, that a workbook here and there is fine. Hth some.
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Old 07-25-2010, 01:04 AM
 
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Originally Posted by Crrrunchberrie View Post
Hey there!

I have a few questions for you guys if you don't mind! My first however is what supplies did you use for your preschooler? I'm slowly gathering things together - ie, crayons, markers, construction paper, etc etc - but I feel like I'm missing a few things. Any ideas are welcome!
crayons, markers, construction paper, glue, tempera paint, watercolors, etc
primary composition notebook (for journaling/drawing - nature studies, etc)
Honestly, with a lot of the 'not-so-basic' supplies, I ended up getting them as needed. There are a lot of things that 'come up'...for example, lunch sacks for crafts, cotton balls, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crrrunchberrie View Post
Second question - How did you save money? Even with all the school supply sales I've easily spent close to $100 and as I said before, I don't think I'm done.
Just tried to purchase things on sale or in bulk if possible. Discount School Supply is a great resource for many things. Buying regular school supplies during 'back to school' sales, etc.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crrrunchberrie View Post
And lastly, did you use a curriculum? I have a TON of workbooks and a few books about homeschooling preschoolers. But everytime someone asks what curr. I'm using and I tell them that, they act as if I'm "doing it wrong". Any suggestions for either now or for K. would be fabulous.
No, not really. It honestly depends on your child. I didn't start out with any type of workbooks at all. I did a lot of "tot school" type activities since DS already knew his alphabet and numbers, etc to work on his fine motor skills. Towards the middle of the year (around age 3.5) he showed a HUGE interest in wanting to write his name and practice writing other things, so I did invest in Handwriting Without Tears Pre-K (Get Set for School) b/c I felt it was important to follow his interests.


When it comes down to it, I feel like there is no 'blanket' answer that applies to every single child. The PP's are correct that the most important thing at the preschool age is just to PLAY and be read to. At the same time, follow their interests AT THEIR PACE when it comes to the rest of it. Try to find ways to make learning fun and follow their lead...you will be surprised how much they learn without you even really trying
I am sure a lot of people would scoff at the thought of my 3.5 year old with a handwriting workbook, but my DS wanted it and I offered it. He never had to TOUCH it if he didn't want to...it was there if he did though Some days he wanted nothing to do with it, other days he wanted to do 3-4 pages at a time. He LOVED having his 'nature journal' notebook where he had space to draw on the top and then write a word underneath it (with me writing it for him first). Anyway...sorry to ramble, but I don't want you to feel badly about the curriculum aspect. Every child is different

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Old 07-25-2010, 01:13 AM
 
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The entire Leap Frog dvd set LOL Seriously, my 2yo and 4yo are doing Letter Factory now (well not this minute, they are asleep since its 11pm here) and they are having a BLAST dancing to the music and copying the letters as they make their sounds along with them on the computer screen (we don't have a tv in the living room, and no dvd player for the one in our bedroom). I did the same with my oldest two at 3 and 4, and they picked up their letter sounds in a hurry. DD3 (my 4yo) is starting to put together some of the sounds she's learned to make cvc words, so I'm planning on kicking it up here with her on Monday and go into our phonics curriculum from when dd2 was in K last school year just because the kid is READY for it now.

But those dvd's along with the stuff you can find in pre-k workbooks and free online is MORE than enough for a preschooler. Just be careful that you don't try to push too much, you don't want you or your preschooler to hit burnout at this stage of the game.

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Melissa 4/03, Lydia 5/04, Kimberly 1/06, and Jordan 9/07

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Old 07-25-2010, 09:20 AM
 
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Mine is 3 1/2. We haven't started anything set but I plan on doing so soon. Ive started to realize she thrives on a schedule and without one her behavior suffers. Here are things she loves though:
Paint- finger paint, regular paint, water colors, bath paints etc.
Crayons- both bath crayons and regular crayons. She prefers the skinny ones to the fat ones though, from what Ive been told usually its the other way around.
Tons of art supplies. I have huge rolls of paper that she loves to make paintings on with her little sister.
Books, books, books and more books. She enjoys picture books and also likes me to read chapter books while shes playing or when we have downtime.
Blocks, puzzles, anything that challenges her.
She loves Kumon workbooks, I got one because it facinated her at the bookstore and she loved it so much she tried to do the whole thing in one day so now we have several. She also loves sticker workbooks. She asks to do them several times a day even when we have already done thing. If she doesn't ask I don't do them but she never doesn't ask so we do a lot of them.

Another thing I would suggest is a good child's encyclopedia. I find that my 3 1/2 year old can ask me questions that leave me speechless because honestly I don't know the answer. Nothing like having to tell your 3 1/2 year old that you don't know and have them tell you "but you mom, mom knows all". Yea, Im going to go invest in a couple of encyclopedias soon.

~Heather~ Mama to Miss E (1/07), Miss A (11/08), Mr.T (2/11) and Miss A (10/12) Expecting our newest blessing sometime late Sept/early Oct.. Wife to my Marine since 11/2005
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Old 07-25-2010, 12:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Crrrunchberrie View Post
Hey there!

I have a few questions for you guys if you don't mind! My first however is what supplies did you use for your preschooler? I'm slowly gathering things together - ie, crayons, markers, construction paper, etc etc - but I feel like I'm missing a few things. Any ideas are welcome!

I'm going to tell you what we've used in the last year, ds just turned 4. I divided it up by category but we don't follow a plan it's just nice to know it there.

Art: Sketchbooks (for drawing on the go), cray-pas, colored pencils, chalk, water colors, fabric scraps, embroidery hoop, needles, embroidery thread, modeling clay, flour (homemade play dough 'cause making the dough is half the fun), old magazines (for cutting up for collages, tempera paint. I'm a believer in using decent supplies for art with kids, quality make a difference in vibrancy and satisfaction, so rather than having a huge amount of supplies we choose at the same time even htough this is a long list we didn't spend a lot of money just looked out for sales and stuff at yard sales. Oh and an oil cloth table cloth to cover the table (again from a thrift store)

Science: vinegar, baking soda, ice cube trays, food coloring, garden tools, a few small planting pots, straws, tinker toys

"School-y stuff": This is what we used but it was all interest driven, in other words ds was attracted to the ideas. An atlas, maze books, one workbook (he chose it), lots of different size and sided dice (die?), alphabet stamps, insect guide book, library card


Second question - How did you save money? Even with all the school supply sales I've easily spent close to $100 and as I said before, I don't think I'm done.

I'm not sure if we save money or not but we didn't get the whole thing set up before hand. I found when I did things didn't get used. We have a monthly budget and go to the learning book store and art store to see what inspires us. Also we let it known to all of our friends that we are homeschooling so they have dropped off discarded stuff for us. Don't laugh but we also walk the allies near our house and find stuff for wood working and boxes for pretend play

And lastly, did you use a curriculum? I have a TON of workbooks and a few books about homeschooling preschoolers. But everytime someone asks what curr. I'm using and I tell them that, they act as if I'm "doing it wrong". Any suggestions for either now or for K. would be fabulous.

Thank you! <3
I know everyone is reminding you that at 3 there isn't a need for curriculum. What I would suggest is that you read everything that you can get your hands on about homeschooling, and about other things that interest you. By learning something on you are doing two things. You are letting your dc see that discovering new things because you are interested is part of being and it gives you a feel for how things can work later on.

Two last pieces of advice. I've noticed no matter what you are doing parenting or educating if it is different than what someone else is doing they will have something to say about it. For some reason some parents think that you homeschooling is some sort judgment of them. Second, have fun with all of this

Mama, writer, partner, wanderer. Living life with my ds (7/06), married to my best friend and nemesis .
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