Alternate home curriculum to compliment children's public kindergarten experience? - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 11 Old 08-26-2012, 11:33 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Three of our four boys are starting kindergarten this fall (my partner's son, my NT son, and my 6 year old son with ASD who I held back a year. I also have 2 month old baby. My background is in child development (mostly reggio-emilia inspired and emergent curriculum) but havn't been working since I went back to school and worked from home for a bit. My partner and I decided it was best for me to continue working from home this next school year because of 3 mismatched kindergarten schedules and new baby, but I am starting to mourn the loss of their prior learning experiences at high quality child-centered programs... I know public school is going to be a whole different story. Since I am not homeschooling, i was wondering if there is any suggested curriculum, resources, websites etc in relation to this scenario- where a parent is wanting to supplement a more creative, well-rounded "school" experience at home to compliment their more academic/ sterile experience at school for half-day kindergarten.

 

Thank you!

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#2 of 11 Old 08-26-2012, 12:13 PM
 
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Too much is too much, and a home curriculum on top of a school curriculum is just too much.

Art, music, play, read to them, imagine, talk, laugh, relax
That's my advice.
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#3 of 11 Old 08-26-2012, 01:22 PM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm not referring to a curriculum like more of what they already will be experiencing at public school, nothing rigorous. I am meaning more to make up for what public school lacks. Kindergarten is less than 3 hours a day here, a pretty big difference from their full time experience at learning centers. Many children go to another preschool-type program part time while they are going to kindergarten, and i am choosing to pull them from their present preschools instead of having them bounce between two schools every day. I know full-time homeschooling is not a long-term option for us at this time.  When they leave their centers I know a lot of their art, music, games, imaginative, building, and large/small motor experiences are going to be diminished/ minimized. I don't have any problem coming up with ideas and such,  but my formal early childhood experience was birth through pre-k, so the elementary years are a little out of my realm :)

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#4 of 11 Old 08-27-2012, 06:02 PM
 
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I would try to work in whatever seems to be lacking on an ad hoc basis, paying a lot of attention to what they seem to be craving.  I wouldn't try to use any kind of formal curriculum or program because they're little kids, and unstructured time is good for them.   I'd have good quality materials available to them and not stress about exactly how they use them (as long as they aren't damaging anything).  

 

To a large extent child care centers and preschools need structure in order for the child to adult ratio there to work-- if all the kids were allowed to do whatever they wanted whenever they wanted, it would be chaos.  However, in a home environment, kids can be much more self-directed because it is home, and there aren't 8 small children for every adult.

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#5 of 11 Old 08-29-2012, 11:04 AM
 
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We use Cobblestone Academy.  My eight year old attends public school however we didn't feel that they were getting the full education that they needed so our neighbor actually told us about Cobblestone and after checking them out we decided it was a good match for us.  We were able to pick and choose what we felt our son was lacking in.  Our neighbor has a daughter in the sixth grade and she uses their on-line tutoring and they say it has really helped.

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#6 of 11 Old 08-30-2012, 11:44 AM
 
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I think creating a rich play environment - things set up to enhance gross motor and imaginative play - would be a great addition, since today's kindergartens leave free play out and discount its value. My (noncommercial) set of links lead to lots of enrichment ideas of all kinds: preschool and kindergarten learning activities.  There are some ideas within the articles listed at the top, and below those are links to websites full of ideas. 

Sure sounds like fun!  smile.gif   Lillian

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#7 of 11 Old 08-30-2012, 11:46 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by onatightrope View Post

I would try to work in whatever seems to be lacking on an ad hoc basis, paying a lot of attention to what they seem to be craving.  I wouldn't try to use any kind of formal curriculum or program because they're little kids, and unstructured time is good for them.   I'd have good quality materials available to them and not stress about exactly how they use them (as long as they aren't damaging anything).  

 

To a large extent child care centers and preschools need structure in order for the child to adult ratio there to work-- if all the kids were allowed to do whatever they wanted whenever they wanted, it would be chaos.  However, in a home environment, kids can be much more self-directed because it is home, and there aren't 8 small children for every adult.

 

thumbsup.gif  

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#8 of 11 Old 09-11-2012, 02:22 PM
 
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I can tell you from working as a teacher in schools and a homeschooling parent that the best thing you can do is to make home a sanctuary of love and warmth, modeling healthy relationships. To support your children academically, they need time in nature, time spent learning from you -- making bread, making rituals for the family, and to see that you love to read. Read to your children, let them see you read, and set up a regular bedtime schedule that involves security. Whisper your joy into their ear just for them as you kiss them goodnight. I could also walk into any math classroom and tell you exactly which children have played games -- cribbage, monopoly, checkers, cards, etc. -- with their parents. It is also helpful to impart a sense of time -- the seasons, holidays, and special days with your children. You have been uniquely equipped with the "curricula" you need just by being you -- your child's forever teacher.

 

peace,

teastaigh
 

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#9 of 11 Old 09-11-2012, 06:00 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by teastaigh View Post

I can tell you from working as a teacher in schools and a homeschooling parent that the best thing you can do is to make home a sanctuary of love and warmth, modeling healthy relationships. To support your children academically, they need time in nature, time spent learning from you -- making bread, making rituals for the family, and to see that you love to read. Read to your children, let them see you read, and set up a regular bedtime schedule that involves security. Whisper your joy into their ear just for them as you kiss them goodnight. I could also walk into any math classroom and tell you exactly which children have played games -- cribbage, monopoly, checkers, cards, etc. -- with their parents. It is also helpful to impart a sense of time -- the seasons, holidays, and special days with your children. You have been uniquely equipped with the "curricula" you need just by being you -- your child's forever teacher.

 

peace,

teastaigh
 

Good reminders and ideas.

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#10 of 11 Old 09-12-2012, 03:31 PM
 
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I would assume that a 3 hour a day K program was strictly academic and that all the goodies will not be part of the program. In that case, I would devote the rest of the day to a healthy lunch, physical activity, and imaginative play time with a large assortement of art supplies. A weekly music or art class would be great or an organized sport plus perhaps some cooking and gardening. I don't think a curriculum is necessary. 

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#11 of 11 Old 09-13-2012, 06:52 PM
 
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Id follow the children's interests.. Provide a lot of fun activities and art time. Take them to the library and the park. Let them explore their world and learn how it all works smile.gif There is a lot of learning that doesn't involve books..


~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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